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Bill to regulate funding of NGOs by Foreign individuals, associations, and companies passed by the Parliament

Bill to regulate funding of NGOs by Foreign individuals, associations, and companiespassed by the Parliament
On September 23, 2020, the bill to make regulation in the Foreign Contribution made to Foreign Contribution. This bill was moved by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Nityanand Rai, in the Upper House of Parliament.

The Bill amends the FCRA 2010 which regulates the acceptance and utilization of foreign contributions by individuals, associations, and companies. This Bill proposed to make the Aadhaar Card for India, and Passports or OCI paper for international citizens, mandatory in order to verify their identity.  

It was earlier passed by the Lok Sabha on 21st September. Parliamentary Affairs Union Minister of State, V Muraleedharan, announced that the Center has decided to recommend the adjournment of House sine dies on Wednesday. 

The Bill for Regulation in Foreign Contribution in NGOs got assent from the Lok Sabha just two days before it was passed from the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday. This Amendment Bill of 2020 got its approval by virtue of a voice vote after discussion. 

The Bill was moved by the Nityanand Rai Minister of State in the Upper House. While presenting the Bill in the Upper House Rai said “The FCRA is a law for national and internal security. Its main motive is to ensure that foreign funds do not dominate the political and social discourse of India,”

He also mentioned that the Bill proposed will make the Aadhar Card for India, and passports or OCI paper for international citizens, mandatory for the identification. 

Mr. State Minister of Home Affairs, Rai also said “Experience says that many organizations attempted to hide their identity and were successful in doing that. The reason behind this is that they had no fear because their identity was not established completely. So Aadhaar card has been brought in to establish their identity”. 

While on the other hand V Muraleedharan, Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs announced the adjournment of the House. “I have to inform members that the government has decided to recommend adjournment of the House sine die today. But some important legislative business passed by Lok Sabha has to be disposed of before adjournment of the House sine die,” Muraleedharan told the Rajya Sabha.

Some Key Features of the Foreign Contribution (Amendment) Bill are:

  1. The new Bill reduced the limit of usable foreign contribution from 50 percent to 20 percent. Which made it clear that any person who receives foreign funding, cannot use more than 1/5th of the amount to meet expenses of the Administration.
  2. This Bill will earlier prevent the transfer of foreign funding to any other person.
  3. The Bill tells that foreign funding means donation or transfer of currency, security, or article by foreign sources.
  4. The new bill regulates the way of acceptance and utilization of foreign funding by individuals, associations, and companies.

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