The Ministry of Human Resource Development on Friday clarified that educational institutes like the Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi University, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, (pictured above) and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research are exempt from provisions of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act.

The ministry was responding to Thursday’s reports that these institutions were barred by the Union Home Ministry from receiving foreign funding under the FCRA, 2010, as they had not filed their annual returns for the last five years. An FCRA licence is mandatory for any organisation that wants to receive funding from abroad.

These institutes and several hundred others had not filed their returns from 2010-’11 to 2014-’15 despite repeated notices, The Indian Express reported, citing a home ministry official.

However, the Ministry of Human Resource Development has said that organisations that are established under the central or state legislature, and are compulsorily audited by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, are exempted from the FCRA Act, 2010. So, institutions like the “Indian Institutes of Technology [created by an Act of Parliament] are exempted from filing returns,” the ministry said.

Moreover, the Indian Institute of Delhi has been filing its returns though it did not necessarily have to, it added. “There has been no information or notice about non-filing of return or any other compliance pending.”

It is mostly societies, non-governmental organisations and trusts that will be affected by the Home Ministry’s list, it said.