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Take up ‘ill-treatment’ of foreign NGOs with India: US senator urges Tillerson

The US lawmaker said the State Department should insist the Indian government to restore its Foreign Contribution (regulation) Act licenses.

By: PTI | Washington | Published: January 12, 2017 1:20 pm
India, India FCRA, FCRA India, US NGOs, US NGOs in India, India NGOs, India news, INdia US NGOs, India news, US news, Rex Tillerson US Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson (Source: AP Photo)

An influential US lawmaker has urged US Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson to take up with India “ill-treatment” of Compassion International and get its license restored, alleging that the Christian charity has been target of “multiple coordinated attacks”.

“Since 2014, Compassion (International) has been the target of multiple coordinated governmental attacks because of its unapologetically Christian belief, but it has been delivering humanitarian services to hundreds of thousands of Indian children,” Republican Senator Cory Gardner from Colorado said during the Secretary of State confirmation hearing of Tillerson yesterday.

“But due to restrictions by the Indian government, they have been unable to fund its India operation since February of 2016, despite having broken no laws. I believe the State Department should take notice that this ill treatment of Compassion International should stop, and it is part of a broader pattern by the government of India, where other NGOs have seen similar problems,” he said.

Last month, the Home Ministry said it is unlikely to reconsider its decision banning the US-based donor from funding Indian NGOs notwithstanding consistent appeals by American authorities.

The NGO was put under ‘prior permission category’ in May last. When a donor organisation is put under this category, it is barred from funding any Indian NGO without the nod from the government.

Gardner said the State Department should insist the Indiang overnment release Compassion funds, restore its Foreign Contribution (regulation) Act (FCRA) licenses and permit Compassion to immediately resume its humanitarian operations.

“We would just appreciate your assistance on that. This is a pattern that is very disturbing as an organisation that does nothing more than try to help children in poverty,” he said.

Responding to the question, Tillerson, however, did not make any commitment and said, “Senator, I appreciate you bringing it to my attention and look forward, if I am confirmed, to discussing it further with you”.

Senator Bob Corker, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee supported Gardner and said the House Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Ed Royce is also very concerned about this issue.

The faith-based group in Colorado has served nearly two million children living in extreme poverty around the world, Gardner said.

The NGO, which is operating in India since 1968, has contributed nearly USD 50 million in aid to India, Gardner said, adding that they have provided one-to-one scholarships for 145,000 Indian children.

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  1. K
    Kunal Pradhan
    May 13, 2017 at 7:21 pm
    Really Compassion India was doing great things for poor to poorest children of India. I wish let Indian construction should reconsider the prior permission for the benefit of poor and neglected children.
    1. B
      Jan 12, 2017 at 8:16 am
      We need not require any advice from Big Brother US how to regulate NGO'S in India. Some of them engaged indirectly on conversion activities and some are ready to tarnish the images of the country for their monitory benefit.
      1. C
        Jan 12, 2017 at 10:02 am
        Correction, When will you people "convert".
        1. J
          Jan 12, 2017 at 9:35 am
          You won't help any poor people and will never let other also to help. When will you people change...
          1. B
            Bleak the
            Jan 20, 2017 at 5:37 pm
            " first go help the black community in poverty in USA to racists republicans" Dude, blacks in US have a quality of life unimaginable to even the top 0.5% of Indians forget the 99.5%. Blacks have an average income of 23 lakhs per annum. Oh please Republicans are the ones who stopped slavery and Jim Crow laws .Kettle calling the stove brown, India ranks 1st in the world for racism. lt;br/gt;Please take your head out of your bottom. I think US government should same to art of living and OSHO.
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