Centre files affidavit at Supreme Court in NGO funding case

Supreme Court of India.

New Delhi, April 5: The Central Government on Wednesday has filed an additional affidavit in the NGO funding case. The matter will be heard next after two weeks. The Supreme Court called for hearing the plea filed by apex court lawyer Manohar Lal Sharma seeking a direction in the NGO funding case earlier on January 10.

Noting that NGOs get “mind-boggling” funds and it has become a “major problem,” the apex court said that it would consider asking the Law Commission of India to bring an effective law to regulate the flow of money to a total 29.99 lakh NGOs functioning in the country.

The Supreme court bench comprising Justice A.M. Khanwilkar asked senior advocate Rakesh Dwivedi to assist the court in finding a way to deal with the issue. If necessary they would refer the matter to the Law Commission. Advocate M.L. Sharma, the petitioner in the case, submitted that 80 percent of the NGOs get foreign funds.

He claimed that “retired government employees and politicians run these NGOs drawing on their influence.” The Central Board of Investigation (CBI) records filed in the apex court in this case showed that only 2,90,787 NGOs file annual financial statements of a total of 29,99,623 registered ones under the Societies Registration Act.

In some states, the CBI said the laws do not even provide for the NGOs to be transparent about their financial dealings. In the Union Territories, of a total of 82,250 NGOs registered and functioning, only 50 file their returns. (ANI)