Introduction:

The Ministry of Home Affairs (hereinafter referred to as “MHA”) has issued a public notice dated October 4, 2017, wherein all existing registered associations under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010 (hereinafter referred to as “FCRA’) and those who seek registration or prior permission or accepting foreign contribution are required to register with DARPAN, a portal that provides space interface between Non-Governmental Organizations (hereinafter referred to as “NGO’) /Voluntary Organisations (hereinafter referred to as “VO’) and the Government. 

Background

The NGO-Partnership System (NGO-PS) Portal was earlier maintained by erstwhile Planning Commission. Thereafter, it was replaced by the NITI Aayog w.e.f. January 1, 2015. Currently, the portal, i.e, DARPAN is being maintained under the aegis of NITI Aayog. NITI Aayog invites all Vos/NGOs to Sign Up on DARPAN. [1]

About NGO Darpan:

NGO Darpan is a free facility offered by NITI Aayog in association with National Informatics Centre and aims to bring about greater partnership between the Government and the Voluntary sector. It seeks to promote interface between Vos/NGOs and key government ministries, government bodies and government departments. The key government ministries, government bodies and government departments include Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Ministry of Tribal Affairs. Such interface is expected to foster better transparency, efficiency and accountability.  

DARPAN also enables VOs/NGOs to enroll centrally and thus facilitates creation of a repository of information about VOs/NGOs, Sector/State wise. The Portal facilitates VOs/NGOs to obtain a system generated Unique ID, as and when signed. The Unique ID is mandatory to apply for grants under various schemes of Ministries/Departments/Governments Bodies.

Signing up on DARPAN:

Any VO / NGO which is registered as a trust/ society/ a private limited nonprofit company, under Section 25 of the Indian Companies Act, 1956 can Sign Up on the NGO Darpan. Vos/ NGOs include organizations engaged in public service, based on ethical, cultural, social, economic, political, religious, spiritual, philanthropic or scientific & technological considerations. VOs include formal as well as informal groups, such as: community-based organizations (CBOs); non-governmental development organizations (NGDOs); charitable organizations; support organizations; networks or federations of such organizations; as well as professional membership associations.

VOs / NGOs should broadly have the following characteristics[2]:

  • They are private, i.e., separate from Government
  • They do not return profits generated to their owners or directors
  • They are self-governing, i.e., not controlled by Government
  • They are registered organizations or informal groups, with defined aims and objectives

As all services under FCRA including but not limited to registration, prior permission, renewal, change of details, uploading of annual details shall require the Unique ID number generated by DARPAN. Therefore, all NGOS have been directed to obtain the Unique ID by registering on DARPAN. While registering on DARPAN, information of the organization like PAN, email, mobile number and name of Chief functionary shall be required.