Activist Teesta Setalvad's NGO License Suspended by Home Ministry

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Activist Teesta Setalvad's NGO License Suspended by Home Ministry

The Sabrang Trust, run by Teesta Setalvad and her husband Javed Anand, can make a representation against the Union Home Ministry order within 30 days.


New Delhi:  In a fresh crackdown on an NGO, Sabrang, run by social activist Teesta Setalvad, the Home Ministry today suspended its registration for six months for alleged violation of Foreign Currency (Regulation) Act (FCRA) that invites termination of its license.

In an order, the Home Ministry said exercising the powers conferred under FCRA, the registration of Sabrang Trust has been suspended for a period of 180 days with effect from September 10.

According to the ministry, it was noticed that the organization received a total donation of Rs 48.42 lakh in 2010-11 and Rs 49.10 lakh in 2011-12, out of which they spent Rs 30.97 lakh and Rs 27.07 lakh during the two years respectively. This comes to 64.23 per cent for 2010-11 and 55.14 per cent for 2011-12 on administrative expenses.

As per section 8 (1)(b) of FCRA, this requires the approval of the Home Ministry before incurring expenses on administrative head exceeding 50 per cent limit, thus making it a violation of the Act.

The Trust, run by Ms Setalvad and her husband Javed Anand, can make a representation against the order within 30 days. However, if the Home Ministry is not satisfied with the reply of the NGO, its registration will be cancelled.

Another NGO run by Ms Setalvad and her husband, Citizens for Justice and Peace, has already been put under prior permission category, thus making it mandatory for the organisation to take permission from the Home Ministry before accepting or utilising any foreign contribution.

Following a recommendation of the Home Ministry, the Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a case and launched a probe against Sabrang Communication and Publishing Pvt Limited, a commercial firm run by Ms Setalvad, for allegedly accepting and utilising foreign contribution in violation of FCRA.

Ms Setalvad has pursued the cases of post-Godhra riots victims in Gujarat when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the chief minister of the state.


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