Monday, Sep 22, 2014

Activists lash out at IB’s ‘NGO report’

Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Posted: June 27, 2014 4:05 am

Gujarat-based activists and civil society organisation representatives on Wednesday condemned the Intelligence Bureau (IB) report that has sent ripples among the social workers after the allegations that some NGOs are stalling India’s economic growth.

Representing several state-based NGOs, activists like Mallika Sarabhai, senior journalist Prakash Shah, Saroop Dhruv and Father Jimmy C Dabhi said that they would mull over taking “legal recourse” in this regard.

Citing the recent legal notice sent by Uday Kumar, an anti-nuclear activist, to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) demanding disciplinary action after the IB report surfaced, with well-known NGO PUCL also looking at a legal recourse soon, Sarabhai said, “We are watching our colleagues who have taken legal recourse by filing legal suits and we might pursue this matter through legal framework and also by speaking about it on public forums.

Many of the NGOs named include some that are working since 30-40 years and even the Supreme Court has taken advice of NGOs at various times. The RSS is an NGO and one of the biggest organisations in the country that gets the maximum foreign funding, so this shows that only a few NGOs are being targeted,” said Sarabhai.

Of the 22 NGOs and donor agencies named in the Intelligence Bureau (IB) report submitted to the government earlier this month, only 11 are registered with the Home Ministry under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), and have been submitting reports of foreign contributions received by them over the years. “We oppose the use of the term ‘foreign’ to describe credible activists of the country. We consider it a gimmick to facilitate the real ‘foreign’ interest,” said Father Jimmy C Dabhi, Director of Research at Human Development & Research Centre.

The meeting was part of a nationwide signature campaign launched by social acivists.

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