Applicability of Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 to NGOs- A detailed analysis

The Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions has issued three new notifications Nos. 1541, 1542, 1543 Dtd. 20.06.2016. By virtue of these notifications procedural guidelines with regard to the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act 2013 (LLA, 2013) have been provided. The guidelines include the functionaries and office bearers of NPOs for disclosure of information. All ‘Public Servants’ have to file declaration of assets and liabilities under Section 44 of LLA 2013 for 3 years as on (01.08.2014, 31.03.2015 & 31.03.2016). Under Section 45 of LLA 2013, if a Public Servant wilfully fails to declare assets and liabilities or provides misleading information then such assets shall, unless otherwise proved, be presumed to belong to the public servant and shall be presumed to be assets acquired by corrupt means.

Please find a detailed analysis on the applicability of the LLA, 2013 and it implications on NGOs here (click here)

Share

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • Google Plus

About

View all posts by

10 thoughts on “Applicability of Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 to NGOs- A detailed analysis

  1. As per the recent notification from FCRA Dept, the returns has to be filed for FY 15-16 and by the 31st July, 2016. So, if the director has left in April 2015 then he/she doesnot have to file annaul return.

    Since the filing process is online, the declaration forms has to be downloaded and filled by the individuals and then submitted to the organization who will upload it online in the FCRA website.

  2. Dear Sir
    Thanks for all your information. After reading all the data we are still confused.
    So please do give us a question answer type information.
    Do the NGO office bearers need to submit the particulars?
    If Yes for the last year 2015-16 or even for the previous three / two years
    Whom should the form be submitted .What is the last date?
    In case some particulars by over sight or with an intention is left out , what will be the consequences?
    Did anyone has gone to court, as I am afraid that some one from NGO will definitely challenge this in the court.
    NGO staff. Do they need to submit also? If yes, what level/ salary category are to be covered?
    I am sorry for showing ty complete ignorance on the act but then a clarification on all the above
    matters will be much use to NGO community
    Regards
    R.Bhakther Solomon

    1. Do the NGO office bearers need to submit the particulars?
      Yes, if they are involved in decision-making and management of the organizations irrespective of whether they are full-time employees or holding honorary positions.
      As per Section 14 (1) h ‘Public servant” have been explained as – Any person who is or has been a Director, Manager, Secretary or other officer of every other society or association of persons or trust (whether registered under any law for the time being in force or not) in receipt of any donation from any foreign source under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010 in excess of ten lakh rupees in a year or more than Rupees 1 crore grant annually.

      If Yes for the last year 2015-16 or even for the previous three / two years?
      As per Notification no. 407/12/2014-AVD-IV(B) Dtd. 12.04.2016, all ‘Public Servants’ have to file declaration of assets and liabilities under Section 44 of LLA 2013 for 3 years as on (01.08.2014, 31.03.2015 & 31.03.2016).
      Further, as per the latest order from the FCRA Dept, the above mentioned individuals are required to furnish an annual return of assets and liabilities every year on or before 31st July. For the FY 2015-16, the returns have to be filed on or before 31.07.2016 without fail to avoid any action as prescribed by the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013.

      Whom should the form be submitted. What is the last date?
      • For FC registered organization receiving donation in excess of Rs. 10 lakh per year from foreign source the Nodal Body for filing of returns shall be Minister-incharge of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
      • For NGOs which receive more than Rs. 1 crore annually from Central Government the Minister-incharge of the Ministry or Department of Govt. of India providing financial grant will b the competent authority.
      o In case the NGO is financed by more than one Ministry or Department of the Government, the Minister-in-charge of the Ministry or Department, whose contribution as financial assistance is highest in the year for which declaration or annual return is being filed, shall be the competent authority.
      o The original declaration or annual return may be filed before the Ministry or Department making the highest contribution as financial assistance and a copy of the return may be sent to all other Ministries or Departments financing the said NGO.
      o Thus, the competent authority with which such annual return is to be filed may vary from year to year based on the Ministry or the Department whose contribution as financial assistance to the said NGO is highest in the year.

      The returns should be received by the competent authority by 31st July, 2016.

      In case some particulars by over sight or with an intention is left out , what will be the consequences?
      Under Section 45 of LLA 2013 if a Public Servant wilfully fails to declare assets and liabilities or provides misleading information then such assets shall, unless otherwise proved, be presumed to belong to the public servant and shall be presumed to be assets acquired by corrupt means.

      NGO staff. Do they need to submit also? If yes, what level/ salary category are to be covered?
      Any person who is or has been a Director, Manager, Secretary or other officer of every other society or association of persons or trust (whether registered under any law for the time being in force or not) in receipt of any donation from any foreign source under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010 in excess of ten lakh rupees in a year or more than Rupees 1 crore grant annually.
      The definition of an ‘officer’ is not directly relevant as the Act refers to ‘other Officer’. In other words it refers to a particular category of officers who execute functions comparable to a Director, Secretary or Manager. Therefore, in our opinion, those involved in management and decision-making of an organization need to file annual returns.

  3. Thanks for the detailed analysis. It is very helpful.
    However, I have a different POV on the issue of the number of years for which the returns need to be filed.
    The analysis has quoted and annexed an office memo directing government personnel to submit returns for the last 3 years. Two points need to be noted here:
    1. This is an ‘office memo’ and not a gazette notification. Thus it does not apply to us.
    2. The government personnel to whom this memo is directed had a ‘competent authority’ since the day this Act came into being. The last date for filing of the returns by these personnel was being extended due to protests by certain groups of govt. personnel. Now, through this memo, the last date of their submission for all these years has been extended. In case of NGO personnel, there was no competent authority notified under the Act. The same has been notified in the gazette on 20th June 2016. Thus in my opinion, the First Return of Assets and Liabilities as on 31 March 2016 need to be filed by us latest by 31st July 2016.

      1. If a director left the NGO in April 2015,will he still be liable for filling the return under lokpal?
        What is the procedure to file the return?How will be the form so filled be filed with the competent authority?Is it the responsibility of the director or of the NGOs to forward the Forms to the competent authority?

        1. As per the recent notification from FCRA Dept, the returns has to be filed for FY 15-16 and by the 31st July, 2016. So, if the director has left in April 2015 then he/she doesnot have to file annaul return.

          Since the filing process is online, the declaration forms has to be downloaded and filled by the individuals and then submitted to the organization who will upload it online in the FCRA website.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *