Union Govt Cancels FCRA Licences of NGOs CHRI, Apne Aap

The government has claimed that the NGOs violated laws and diverted funds received from abroad.

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New Delhi: The Union home ministry has cancelled the FCRA licence of two NGOs, the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) and Apne Aap Women Worldwide (AAWW). The government has claimed that the NGOs violated laws and diverted funds received from abroad, according to PTI.

The NGOs also failed to file annual financial returns mandated under the FCRA 2010, PTI quoted home ministry officials as saying.

The CHRI works in the field of realisation of people’s basic human right to access information from government and other public bodies in Commonwealth countries, according to its website. The organisation also works on police reforms programmes that aims to realise increased demand for rights-based police reform and the strengthening of police accountability in the Commonwealth.

CHRI’s FCRA licence had been suspended in June last year, after which the organisation had approached the Delhi high court. As The Wire has reported, the Union government told the Delhi high court that it would not present the original records of alleged FCRA violations by the NGO.

The high court had not provided any relief, and had upheld the government’s stay order.

The AAWW was co-founded by 22 women from a red-light district in Mumbai, with a shared vision of a world where no woman would be bought or sold and end sex trafficking, the NGO’s website said.

The government has cancelled the FCRA registration of nearly 1,900 NGOs for allegedly violating various provisions of the law in the last five years, between 2017 and 2021. Rights groups and others have alleged that the government is using this law to cut off funds for organisations whose work is inconvenient for the government.

(With PTI inputs)