Days after an Intelligence Bureau (IB) report alleged that NGOs were stalling India’s economic growth, the union Home Ministry has asked Reserve Bank of India to ensure prior permission is sought before any donation is made to NGO Greenpeace by two overseas contributors.
Any contribution from Greenpeace International and Climate Works Foundation to Greenpeace India would have to be cleared by the Home Ministry, the ministry has said, citing Section 46 of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010.
Under FCRA, the “Central Government may give such directions as it may deem necessary to any other authority or person… regarding the carrying into execution of the provisions of this Act”. The IB report submitted to the Prime Minister’s Office and the National Security Adviser recommended that foreign donations to Greenpeace should be in the ‘prior category’ list, ensuring that permission is taken before any funds flow in for its activities.
In its communication, the Home Ministry has asked RBI to direct all banks to this effect, and to also report if any government department or institution was receiving such funds from these two organisations.
With this, Greenpeace International and Climate Works Foundation have been clubbed with Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, which have been put on a similar leash.
Reacting to the IB report, Greenpeace India said that the organisation was not dependent on overseas funds alone. “We have enough contributors within India to sustain our pro-people activities,” Greenpeace spokesperson Bharti Sinha said in reaction to the government invoking FCRA provisions against it.
The report has said Greenpeace was trying to raise issues such as those of e-waste generated by IT-based service providers, opposing genetically modified food, and coal-fired power plants to stall growth.
The report listed 12 foreign nationals who have been associated with NGOs in their campaign against coal mines, power projects and nuclear power plants.