The Bill has introduced a new concept for Societies which are affiliated to foreign NGOs. A foreign society is defined under S. 2 (i) as a society or other association of individuals incorporated outside India within the meaning of Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (FEMA); as defined under section 53 of this Act. This definition is not very clear. It is not clear exactly who all will fall under this definition. Would it mean only those organisations which apply for registrations as a society or could it mean even Liaison Office,Branch office or a S. 25 company promoted by a foreign NGO. Further often foreign NGOs form a society with Indians as members. Would such an organisation would be termed as foreign society, it is not clear. Even when FEMA is examined only definition there is no proper definition which can help identify which all organisations could fall under foreign society.
A foreign society would need to submit several documents with the Registrar proposed under the Act within 30 days of opening of an establishment in India. A foreign Society would also need to submit its annual accounts to the Registrar on a regular basis. It would need to display its name and country of its incorporation outside its office
as well as on letterheads, etc.
OTHER IMPORTANT PROPOSALS
Another very important proposal is that every person before s/he is appointed to the Board of a Governing Body would need to apply for a Governing Body identification Number. This is equivalent to DIN (Director’s Identification Number in corporate sector.
S. 57 requires Registrar to maintain a register of all such societies,
alongwith documents filed. These would be open to public inspection.
Regulation 8 has a requirement that all Governing Body Members / Members of a Multi-State Society should disclose their interest in any proposed contract / arrangement that the society needs to enter into.
Regulation 9 requires that society must make arrangements to protect employees / members under Whistleblower policy.
SRRF proposes to submit comments on these proposals latest by tomorrow, any member who would like to provide comments should certainly provide the same by today or latest tomorrow first half.