Over the last few years, the governments have been keeping a strict watch on the national and international funding of non-government organizations (NGOs). The amendments in the Foreign Contribution Regulatory Act (FCRA) further limited the scope of such welfare organizations to go that extra mile to reach out to the most vulnerable and needy sections of society. The ongoing health pandemic has further magnified the need for NGOs since they have worked shoulder to shoulder with the Centre and several state governments to provide aid during the two waves.
How And Why Are Electoral Bonds Dubious?
On the other hand, the hypocritical nature of the government is outrightly visible since anonymous investments through electoral bonds are well taken by the government. The details of the electoral bonds are accessible only to the bank that issues those bonds and the Parties that encash those bonds. Earlier, only profitable business entities could invest in the electoral bonds, which is no longer a clause in place; thus, it is highly probable that the assets come through shell companies. Experts often argue that if only the concerned bank and the government is aware of the details of the bond money getting routed through a chain of shell companies will make deciphering the identity of the actual donor nearly impossible. Moreover, the Election Commission also voiced similar concerns to the Supreme Court in 2017.
While we keep both scenarios on a scale, the concerns of the organizations that help people hold more meat, earlier this year, Amnesty International exited the country after the government choked the funds. Other prominent civil liberty, human rights and charitable groups faced a similar fate. The government amended FCRA last year, at a time when the non-profit sector in the country required more freedom of operation and liquidity. Such stringent measures limit the scope of helping those in much need and restrain a considerable section of the population from taking up voluntary and welfare activities.
The Need Of An Unbiased Approach
Under any circumstance, the argument does not support dubious funding; however, it demands an unbiased approach towards approaching issues that matter in public welfare. The government's citing of 'adverse inputs' or allegations of religious conversions do not fall under matters of national concern; however, unknown and unaccounted funding for political parties before the election indeed does.
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