77 NGOs under scanner of enforcement agencies

The government is probing funds received by 77 NGOs from foreign shores, including tax havens, to find out their sources, suspected forex violation and alleged illegal investment.

Updated: Nov 26, 2010, 15:18 PM IST

New Delhi: The government is probing funds received by 77 NGOs from foreign shores, including tax havens, to find out their sources, suspected forex violation and alleged illegal investment.

The probe has been launched after the Intelligence Bureau (IB) shared with the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) the activities of the non-government organisations and their suspected foreign sources of funds.

The investigations by the enforcement agencies will try to find out from which countries the NGOs were receiving the funds from, have they followed RBI regulations to bring in funds, the beneficiaries of the money, whether proper returns have been filed to the Income Tax department and their
expenditure details, sources said.

The action came after the Economic Intelligence Council expressed the need for a mechanism to track, collate and analyse inward foreign remittances.

Subsequently, a sub-committee was constituted within the Central Economic Intelligence Bureau (CEIB) which comprises representatives from IB, Enforcement Directorate, FIU, Reserve Bank of India and CEIB.

The sub-group has recommended that IB share a negative list with the FIU for further dissemination with reporting entities to track foreign remittances to organisations or individuals.

"The government will continue to see that the joint mechanism takes up the closer monitoring so that each individual case is taken to its logical conclusion in a timely manner as per provisions of law," an official said.

Altogether 41 NGOs have already been banned from receiving foreign contributions due to corruption or irregularities in utilisation of such funds received under Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act.

Besides, 35 associations are placed in prior permission category and accounts of 11 associations are frozen. Besides, nine cases have been referred to CBI for detailed investigations for FCRA violations.

Rs 10,802.67 crore in foreign contribution had been received by 20,088 associations in 2008-09 and Rs 9,663.46 crore by 18,796 organisations in 2007-08.

PTI

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