Indians are now permitted to receive up to Rs. 10 lakh annually from relatives who live overseas without telling the authorities thanks to changes made by the Union Home Ministry to certain rules relating to the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA). The previous cap was Rs. 1 lakh. The home ministry also stated in a notification that instead of 30 days, if the sum surpasses, the people would now have 90 days to notify the government. The new regulations, known as the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Amendment Rules, 2022, were published in the gazette by the home ministry.
- The phrases ten lakh rupees shall be substituted for one lakh rupees and thirty days shall be substituted for thirty days and one lakh rupees, respectively, in rule 6 of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Rules, 2011.
- The disclosure of receiving foreign funds from relatives is covered by Rule 6.
- It previously specified that anyone receiving foreign contributions from any of their relatives in excess of Rs 1 lakh or the equivalent in a financial year must notify the central government (details of funds) within 30 days of receiving such contributions.
- Similarly, the updated regulations have given people and organisations or NGOs 45 days to inform the home ministry about bank account (s) that are to be utilised for utilisation of such monies.
- Rule 9 deals with application of getting registration or prior authorisation under the FCRA to receive donations. This time frame expired thirty days ago.
- Provision “b” of Rule 13—which required the central government to publish on its website quarterly declarations of foreign funds—along with donor information, the amount received, the date of receipt, etc.—has also been “omitted” by the government.
Anyone receiving foreign funding under the FCRA will now need to abide by the existing requirement to post the audited statement of accounts on receipts and utilisation of the foreign contribution, including income and expenditure statement, receipt and payment account, and balance sheet for each financial year beginning on the first of April, within nine months of the financial year’s end, on its official website or on the website as specified by the Center.