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September 14, 2023

MHA terminates Bal Trust’s FCRA license

MHA terminates Bal Trust’s FCRA license

The government has revoked the licenses of Bal Raksha Bharat, also known as Save The Children, Srinivas Malliah Memorial Theatre, Crafts Museum, and SEWA, which work in animal husbandry, dairying, and fisheries out of North East Delhi, ahead of the September 30 deadline for renewing FCRA licenses for non-governmental organizations (NGOs), according to officials.

In its audited report submitted in March, Save The Children reported receiving Rs. 163,318,59,530 in cash and Rs. 66,66,444 in kind for the years 2021–2022. The major NGO that advocates for children’s rights operates in 16 different states around the nation. A senior member of the trust’s staff confirmed that its FCRA license had been revoked but offered no other details.

The Srinivas Malliah Memorial Theatre, the second NGO to lose its FCRA license, was founded in honor of Ullal Srinivas Malliah, a politician and advocate for civil liberties. It teaches students how to make traditional crafts such puppets, masks, bamboo crafts, paper cutouts, toys, embroidery, tailoring, and needlework.

The deadline for NGOs with FCRA licenses to apply for renewal of their licenses was extended to September 2020 with the introduction of the FCRA law revisions. All NGOs received extensions until September 30, 2023, after which several well-known NGOs will have their FCRA licenses revoked. According to MHA data, there are currently 348 trusts with new registrations approved for 2023, whereas there are 16,497 NGOs with FCRA licenses operating in India.

The home ministry issues FCRA licenses to NGOs for a period of five years and evaluates applications based on yearly returns and foreign funds that were received for the intended purpose. The FCRA Act is broken whenever foreign funds are used improperly or diverted by NGOs. Earlier, the ministry revoked the YWCA Delhi’s FCRA license on the grounds of money misappropriation. The 1912-founded, women-focused NGO manages a number of working men’s dormitories in Delhi. Over 100 NG0s, including the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust, and MVP, had their licenses revoked in the previous year.

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