NEW DELHI: The Central government on Wednesday said it had received several representations, including from NGOs and associations, seeking changes in the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Rules 2011, amended last in 2020.
Minister of state for home Nityanand Rai, in reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha, however, informed the members that the government had already provided some relaxations to facilitate a smooth transition to the amended FCRA regime. These included the extension of certain deadlines, including for submission of annual reports, the opening of ‘FCRA account’ at SBI New Delhi main branch and extending the validity of FCRA certifications due to expire between September 2020 and May 2021.
Rai further informed the House that the FCRA certificates of 8,353 NGOs/associations were not renewed and certificates of 264 NGOs/associations suspended under Section 13 of FCRA over five years from 2016 and 2020.
In reply to the question in the Rajya Sabha on whether the government had received representations from NGOs in reference to the rules framed under Foreign Contribution Regulation (Amendment) Rules, 2020 being too restrictive and stringent, the home ministry said several representations seeking changes in the FCRR, 2011 have been received. However, it added that some relaxations had already been provided to facilitate a smooth transition to the amended FCRA regime. These included extension of final date submission of annual reports, as required under section 18 of the FCRA, 2010, from December 31, 2020 to June 30, 2021. Also, the last date for opening of exclusive ‘FCRA account’ in the State Bank of India, New Delhi Main Branch, was extended up to March 31, 2021. Last but not the least, the validity of FCRA registration certificates expiring during the period September 29, 2020 to May 31, 2021, has been extended up to May 31, 2021.