Are the funds given to the NGO’s utilised properly?
It has been claimed on the basis of reply provided under the Right to Information (RTI) Act that the Union and State governments give yearly grants worth Rs.1,000 crore to various NGOs. Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) has alleged that the funding to the tune of hundreds of crores to voluntary organisations by the government of India was a scam and in dire need of reform. It has been claimed that the audit by the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India (CAG) was inadequate and does not include the NGOs.
Based on replies received under the RTI Act, ACHR’s report, ‘India’s Funds to NGOs Squandered’ claims that the Central Ministries and the State governments provided at least Rs. 6,654.35 crore as grants to NGOs and voluntary organisations between 2002-03 and 2008-09 while there is little accountability of utilisation of funds. It has demanded a ‘National Grants-in-Aid Commission’ through which all grants to the voluntary sector by all the Ministries should be routed for transparency and better monitoring of projects.
There was no accountability beyond blacklisting of NGOs amidst allegations of corruption and nepotism in approval of projects. ACHR has also demanded to invite applications through open call for proposals and consider projects on merits by independent evaluators.
There is a need for proper audit of the non-government organisations (NGOs), particularly those getting grants from the government.