Centre seeks apex court rule on NGOs' balance sheet

Centre seeks apex court rule on NGOs' balance sheet

Submitting details must for allowing further grants

Centre seeks apex court rule on NGOs' balance sheet

The Centre on Monday urged the Supreme Court to put a condition for submission of three years balance sheets for non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to get financial grant.

Additional Solicitor General P S Patwalia, appearing for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), submitted that the court may impose a precondition on NGOs that they should first submit their balance sheets, including income and expenditure statements, for three preceding years before further grants were allowed.

His suggestions before a three-judge bench, presided over by Chief Justice of India H L Dattu, came with a report prepared by the CBI stating that only about 10 per cent of the 22 lakh-plus NGOs across 20 states and six Union Territories filed their annual income and expenditure statements with the authorities.

The court, however, said a direction could be issued in this regard only after hearing the case in detail.

The CBI submitted its report following an order issued by the apex court on September 2, 2013, in a PIL filed by Supreme Court advocate Manohar Lal Sharma alleging misuse of funds by Anna Hazare's NGO Hind Swaraj Trust.

The court had then had asked the CBI to file the entire list of NGOs in the country registered under the Societies Registration Act, besides their funding and expenditure details.

According to the CBI analysis, out of 22,39,971 NGOs across 20 states, approximately 2,23,428 submitted annual returns. In six Union Territories, out of 5,684 NGOs, only 50 file their balance sheets annually.

Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana had not given any information to the CBI on the NGOs functioning there.