Delhi High Court has allowed an NGO, whose registration to receive foreign funding was not renewed by the government, to continue using the funds already available in its FCRA account. Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva however made it clear that the NGO, Indian Social Action Forum (INSAF), would not be entitled to receive any fresh foreign contribution till the next date of hearing on November 31. “It is directed that till the next date of hearing, the registration of petitioner shall be deemed to continue for the purposes of withdrawal of money from the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) Account for utilisation in accordance with the Act.
“However, petitioner would not be entitled to receive any fresh contribution in foreign exchange till the next date of hearing,” it said. INSAF is one among the 11,000 NGOs, which has recently lost their foreign funding registration under FCRA, after the Centre refused to renew them. The government had recently denied FCRA registration to 25 NGOs for being allegedly involved in anti-national activities, and derecognised over 11,000 such organisations for failing to apply for renewal. In the instant case, Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain, told the court that the action of non-renewal was taken based on intelligence inputs. He said, he would place the relevant records before the court on the next date of hearing.
The NGO in its plea has claimed the only communication done with it said, “your application for renewal is refused”. It contended that due to non-renewal of its registration, it would neither be entitled to receive foreign contribution, nor utilise the funds already received and kept in the designated FCRA account and “all the money lying therein, for all practical purposes, would be frozen”.