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HomeNewsCentre to reaffirm its Foreign Contribution Registration stand on Oxfam India in...

Centre to reaffirm its Foreign Contribution Registration stand on Oxfam India in HC

The Centre will reaffirm its stand before the Delhi High Court on rejection of Oxfam India‘s Foreign Contribution Registration (FCRA) licence revision application, citing enquiry conducted under section 32 of the FCR Act, said officials.

The high court had, last month, sought a detailed response from the home ministry on rejection of Oxfam India’s revision plea. The non-governmental organisation (NGO) had filed a revision plea against cancellation of its FCRA licence early last year after the FCRA renewal application was denied in December 2021.

Under section 32 of FCRA, 2010, the Centre had earlier renewed FCRA licences of the Delhi-based Public Health Foundation of India and Kolkata’s Missionaries of Charity. However, the ministry denied the renewal order to Oxfam India and rejected its revision petition, asserting that the NGO did not fulfil the eligibility criteria specified in the law. The issue of Oxfam India’s FCRA was raised by the UK government during the bilateral dialogue held on February 10 last year.

ET Online

In August-September last year, the home ministry introduced an online revision application to check rampant corruption within the foreigners division for renewal and revision clearances. It stated that any application under section 32 of the Act for revision of an order passed by the competent authority shall be made in electronic form. The application can be made within a year from the date on which the cancellation order was communicated and NGOs are required to pay a fee of ₹3,000 along with justification for the revision.

Oxfam India, along with Centre for Policy Research (CPR), was surveyed by the income-tax department in September last year. The outcome of the IT surveys and violation of FCRA was said to be one of the main reasons for rejection of Oxfam’s application, said officials.

A representative of Oxfam India did not comment on the matter.

The findings of the I-T survey were said to be among the reasons for suspension of the CPR’s FCRA licence for six months by the home ministry recently. In a statement on March 1, the CPR said it will “explore all avenues of recourse available to us”.

“Our work and institutional purpose is to advance our constitutional goals and protect constitutional guarantees. We are absolutely confident that the matter will be resolved speedily, in fairness and in the spirit of our constitutional values,” the CPR said in a statement. To receive foreign grants, NGOs must register with the home ministry, which assigns a unique FCRA registration number to be renewed every five years.

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