Date : 29 Dec 2021
Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA)Tags :
Economic and Social Development-Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
Why in the News?
- The Foreigners Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA) registration of Missionaries of Charity (MoC), a Catholic religious congregation set up by Nobel laureate Mother Teresa in 1950, was not renewed because of “audit irregularities”.
About the Act
- Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), 2010 regulates foreign funding in India and the act is implemented by the ministry of home affairs.
- Individuals can accept foreign contributions up to Rs. 25000 without permission of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
- The Act ensures that the recipients of foreign contributions adhere to the stated purpose for which such contribution has been obtained.
- Under the Act, organizations are required to register themselves every five years.
Key PointsProhibition to accept foreign contribution:
- Under the Act, certain persons are prohibited to accept any foreign contribution. These include election candidates, editor or publisher of a newspaper, judges, government servants, members of any legislature, and political parties, among others. The Bill adds public servants (as defined under the Indian Penal Code) to this list.
- Under the Act, foreign contribution cannot be transferred to any other person unless such person is also registered to accept foreign contribution (or has obtained prior permission under the Act to obtain foreign contribution).
- The Act states that a person may accept foreign contribution if they have: (i) obtained a certificate of registration from central government, or (ii) not registered, but obtained prior permission from the government to accept foreign contribution.
- The Bill adds that any person seeking prior permission, registration, or renewal of registration must provide the Aadhaar number of all its office bearers, directors, or key functionaries, as an identification document.
- Under the Act, a registered person must accept foreign contributions only in a single branch of a scheduled bank specified by them.
- Under the Act, if a person accepting foreign contribution is found guilty of violating any provisions of the Act or the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 1976, the unutilized or unreceived foreign contribution may be utilized or received, only with the prior approval of the central government.
- Under the Act, every person who has been given a certificate of registration must renew the certificate within six months of expiration.
- Under the Act, a person who receives foreign contribution must use it only for the purpose for which the contribution is received. Further, they must not use more than 50% of the contribution for meeting administrative expenses. The Bill reduces this limit to 20%.
- The Bill adds a provision allowing the central government to permit a person to surrender their registration certificate.
- Under the Act, the government may suspend the registration of a person for a period not exceeding 180 days.