Government extends validity of FCRA registration of NGOs till June 30

The Ministry of Home Affairs office at North Block in New Delhi. File
| Photo Credit: The Hindu

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on March 28 extended the validity of Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA) registration of non-government organisations (NGOs) and associations till June 30.

Registrations of many NGOs are up for renewal since September 29, 2020. The registration, mandatory to receive foreign funds, is renewed every five years.

The Ministry has extended the validity of NGOs at least nine times since 2020 as the applications could not be processed within the stipulated time frame.

On Thursday, an order from the MHA said the validity of registration certificates of entities whose validity was extended till March 31 and “whose renewal application is pending will stand extended till June 30, 2024, or till the date of disposal of renewal application, whichever is earlier.”

The order said all FCRA-registered associations should note that in case of refusal of the application for renewal of registration, the validity of the certificate shall be deemed to have expired on the date of refusal of the application and the association or the NGO shall not be eligible either to receive the foreign contribution or utilise the foreign contribution received.

The order said FCRA entities whose five-year validity period is expiring between April 1 and June 30 this year and the NGOs that have applied for renewal before the expiry of the registration will also stand extended till June 30 “or till the date of disposal of renewal application, whichever is earlier.”

In the first set of clearances, FCRA registration of nearly 6,000 NGOs had ceased to operate from January 1, 2022, as the MHA had refused to renew their applications, or the NGOs did not apply for one. There are 16,412 FCRA-registered NGOs as on Friday, down from over 22,000 on December 31, 2021.

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