Skip to main content

Bring NGOs under RTI, insists Reliance thinktank discussion, calls Greenpeace, Ford Foundation "anti-development"

Venkataraman
By Our Representative
A Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) thinktank report, based on a discussion organized by it in Chennai, has floated a new idea -- that non-government organizations (NGOs) should be brought under right to information (RTI) Act. The thinktank is known to organize discussions on different policy issues nagging the government, and indirectly presents a particular corporate view of what should be done on the issues before the officialdom.
Extensively quoting a Chennai-based pro-Narendra Modi "social activist" NS Venkataraman, trustee of a Chennai-based social organization Nandini Voice, the report says, while acknowledging that many of the "NGOs have done phenomenal work in public welfare", insists that the "motives" behind the initiatives of few of of them in the country have lately "become questionable."
Venkataraman -- who initiated the discussion organized by Observation Research Foundation (ORF), the Reliance-owned think-tank, who is particularly active lately in organizing policy discussions -- was quoted as saying that "the NGOs themselves should be subjected to the Right to Information Act (RTI), a tool that these organisations use against governmental bodies to extract information."
During the discussion, according to the ORF report, Venkatraman particularly referred to the NGOs like Greenpeace and Ford Foundation as anti-development, one reason why, he believed, they have come under the scanner of the Government of India.
Venkataram "broadly classified the NGOs into two categories, on the basis of ’size’ and portfolio(s). He appreciated the unassuming welfare services carried out by the small NGOs, and cited instances where such contributions go seldom recognized", it adds.
"These NGOs also include several individuals who genuinely carry out philanthropic activities like aiding differently-abled people for their education and employment with purely service motive and without seeking any publicity or having some hidden agenda", the report states.
"On the other hand, some big NGOs/international NGOs function like corporate entities, with state of the art offices and are adequately funded from foreign sources. Many of these big NGOs may have other hidden agendas behind their philanthropic services such as promoting political motives, foreign interest, anti-national activities, religious conversions and at times money-laundering", the report points out.
Critical of "some NGOs" who have become "promising platforms for many political aspirants who use NGO activism to gain entry into the public spotlight", the report underlines, quoting Venkataraman, "Some of these big multinational NGOs like Greenpeace and Ford foundation have resorted to activism hindering projects and development initiatives of national importance, rather than carrying out actual philanthropic work."
During the discussion, the report says, Venkataraman "cited the anti-nuclear activism at the Russian-aided Kudamkulam power project in Tamil Nadu, where politically-inspired methods for attracting crowds were said to have been adopted." At the same time, he was critical of "some corporates", without naming them, who were using "NGOs as a means of effective and economic way of publicizing their product and corporate brands."

Comments

TRENDING

Mallika Sarabhai releases speech she was 'not allowed' to give at NID Convocation on Feb 7

Counterview Desk
The National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmedabad, a Ministry of Commerce and Industry body, landed itself in controversy following its decision to put off its 40th convocation ceremony, where noted danseuse Mallika Sarabhai was invited as chief guest. The ceremony was scheduled to be held on February 7.

Modi, Shah 'forget': Gandhi’s first Satyagraha was against citizenship law of South Africa

By Nachiketa Desai*
Hindu fanatic Nathuram Godse assassinated Mahatma Gandhi once on January 30, 1948 but his followers raising the war cry of ‘Jai Sriram’ are killing the Mahatma every day. In his home state of Gujarat, Gandhiji was killed a thousand times in 2002 when over 2,000 Muslims were butchered, their women raped, homes and shops plundered and set on fire and even unborn babies ripped out of the wombs of their mothers.

As corona virus 'travels' to rural areas, NGO begins training tribals, marginalised women

By Souparno Chatterjee*
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared corona virus a pandemic. Originating from Wuhan in China, it has traversed the entire globe, almost, and claimed more than 16,000 lives already. That’s largely the urban population. In India, despite all the preparedness and war-like promptness to safeguard against the pandemic, several lives have been lost , and hundreds of individuals have tested positive.

Rani Laxmi Bai, Tatya Tope 'martyred' by East India Company, Scindia's forefathers

By Our Representative
In an email alert to Counterview, well-known political scientist Shamsul Islam has said that was “shameful for any political party in democratic India to keep children of Sindhias in their flock” given their role during the First War of Indian Independence (1857). In a direct commentary on Madhya Pradesh Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia moving over to BJP, Prof Islam has quote from a British gazetteer to prove his point.

COVID-19: Dalit rights bodies regret, no relief plan yet for SCs, STs, marginalized

By Our Representative
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the National Dalit Watch-National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights, endorsed* by several other Dalit rights organizations, have insisted, the Government of India should particular care of the scheduled castes and tribes, trans folks, persons with disabilities and the women and children from these communities, while fighting against COVID-19 pandemic.

Big 'danger' of NPR: A babu can tag anyone as doubtful citizen, Jharkhand meet told

' By Our Representative
People in large numbers from across Jharkhand gathered at the Raj Bhawan in Ranchi to demand that the Hemant Soren government reject National Population Register (NPR) and stop all NPR-related activities. The people’s organisations which participated in the dharna under the banner of the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (JMM) resolved to intensify their struggle, insisting, NPR is not a Hindu-Muslim issue but is essentially anti-poor.

Coronavirus scare ‘pushing’ people from Northeast India into more hardship

By Rishiraj Sinha, Biswanath Sinha*
“No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background or his religion. People learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” – Nelson Mandela
***

Gujarat govt plan to 'banish' Gandhian activist anti-democratic, unconstitutional

By Rohit Prajapati*
The current Central and Gujarat governments, and their bureaucracy, have been and are still unable to answer and address the concerns raised, with facts, figures, and constitutional provisions, regarding the terror of tourism in the name of the Statue of Unity and tourism projects surrounding it.

Haridwar Swamis lead Khudai Khidmatgar peace march in Delhi 'riot affected' areas

By Our Representative
A Khudai Kidmatgar team, which visited the riot-affected regions along with Swami Shivanand Saraswati and Swami Punyanand, has insisted that India's true heritage is the lesson of ‘vasudhaiv kutumbakam', and it is the responsibility of all to carry froward this legacy. Originally founded by Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan in 1930, also known as Frontier Gandhi, Khudai Khidmatgar is claimed to have been revived by young Gandhian activist Faisal Khan in 2011.