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July 02, 2021


Any individual, if not registered under the Central Government, can receive foreign contribution only soon after getting the prior permission of the Central Government and with such prior permission this can be valid for a particular purpose for which it is obtained and from the specific source.

Any association registered through the Central Government or granted prior permission under section of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 1976, as it stands immediately before the start of this Act, shall be considered to be registered or granted prior permission, as per the case, under such Act and hence the registration will be valid for a duration of five years from the date this section comes into existence.

For this purpose, the Association should meet following criteria:

  • Should be registered with an existing statute such as the Indian Trusts Act, 1882 or the Societies Registration Act, 1860 or section 8 of the Companies Act, 2013 etc.
  • The submission of a particular commitment letter from the donor representing the amount of foreign contribution and the purpose for which it is proposed to be given.

Documents Required for the FCRA Prior Permission

Following documents are needed for FCRA prior permission:-

  • Signature of the chief functionary
  • Self-certified copy of registration certificate/Trust deed etc., of the association.
  • Duly signed Commitment Letter from Donor.
  • Project Report on the basis of FC received.
  • Associations needs to upload affidavit of every key functionary.
  • Copy of Chief Functionary signature and copy of Seal of the Association which should be saved in JPG/JPEG format.
  • Particulars of the designated bank account in SBI, Sansad Marg, New Delhi
  • Applicant seeking prior permission for foreign contribution of more than Rs.50,00,000/- (Fifty Lakh rupees) should include audited statements of accounts and activity report of an Association for the last three years since the date of submission of application.
  • In case of Indian members Aadhar copy of the Board members and in case of foreign members a copy of passport or overseas citizen card (OCI).


As per section 11 of the FCRA 2010 it says that if a person is registered or grants prior permission, if found “guilty” of any breach under this act, then the central government can levy restrictions on the receipt and usage of the foreign contribution.

Although, FCRA Amendment Act, 2020 dated 29th September 2020 says that, if taken prior permission, the specific limitations may be levied based on any information or report putting hold on the summary inquiry and the FCRA department has grounds to accept that if a person who has been approved prior permission breach any of the provisions of this Act. In other words, such limitations may be levied even if violations are alleged. It may not be necessary that the breach is proved or obtained finality in imposing such restrictions.

Prior Permission under FCRA-Overview:- An organization or an association can obtain foreign contribution deprived o registration using prior permission from the FCRA department. Foreign materials and funds may only be obtained under two such circumstances-

  1. The organization must have obtained permanent registration from the FCRA department, or
  2. An organization or an association received prior permission from the FCRA department based on the cases
  3. The applicable circumstances- The reference of the term ‘prior permission’ that is made in sections 5 and 6 of the FCRA. Prior permission is stated based on case to case and different permission would be important for any following receipt and different transactions. Mostly, prior permission is required under the following circumstances:
  4. Organization does not possess a permanent FCRA registration number.
  5. The FCRA registration number has been called off by the Government.                          The association is directed by the Central Government in taking prior permission under the provisions of section 10 where the power has been given to forbid any organization in receiving foreign funds.
  1. The FCRA number is deferred because of violation of the conditions and provisions as specified under the FCRA.
  2. The organization is political in nature and not a political party.
  3. Any resident of India or any citizen of India who is residing outside India, and acquiring foreign funds in place of an organization of political nature.
Disclaimer : The information contained in this article is intended solely for the dissemination of information and does not aim at solicitation of work. Though meticulous care has been taken but the author assumes no liability in respect of any loss/ damage incurred while acting on the information provided in this article. The author can be reached at sanjeev@semantictaxgen.in and can be called at +91-8126700005.

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