NITI Aayog may be nodal agency for NGO registration, SC told

National |  IANS  | Published : Wed, Apr 05, 2017, 10:44 PM

New Delhi, April 5 :The Centre on Wednesday informed the Supreme Court that NITI Aayog or any agency set up by it will act as a nodal agency for registration and accreditation of NGOs/voluntary organisations seeking financial support from the government.

The NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog will also maintain a data base and put in place a system to manage and disseminate information relating to non-governmental organisations, the government also told a bench of Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud.

Besides, the Aayog portal -- NGO Darpan -- will be strengthened and aligned more closely with accreditation functions and also provide snapshot of the NGO with respect to its ongoing and past works.

It will particularly focus on public and foreign funds so as to facilitate grant-extending authorities in deciding on the bona fides and past experiences of the NGO. 

These are part of the Centre's guidelines framed for accreditation of NGOs that receive government grants as well as the manner in which their accounts will be maintained and audited.

The accreditation will require regular updating of database, consistency in compliance of statutory requirements, evaluation of past track record and standing in their field of operation.

The guidelines have been framed in pursuance of the apex court's January 10 direction to frame guidelines so as to ensure stronger regulation mechanism.

The guidelines provide for release of funds to the NGOs through Public Fund Management System and three-tier monitoring for central ministries, comprising in-house monitoring process by grant-making institution, as well as panels at the state and district levels.

Besides, there would be independent third-party monitoring like the National Monitor System of the Ministry of Rural Development that may be operated by the NITI Aayog.

Giving two weeks, the court asked amicus curiae Rakesh Dwivedi and petitioner-advocate Mahohar Lal Sharma to give their views on the veracity of the guidelines submitted before it.

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