The Indian government led by a Hindu nationalist party, which is believed to be cracking down on Christian groups, has banned the Believers Church, founded by K.P. Yohannan of Gospel for Asia, and three other groups associated with it, from receiving foreign funds. The church believes they will get their licence back soon.
The Ministry of Home Affairs, or the interior ministry, has cancelled the registrations of the southern India-based Believers Church and three of its affiliates — Ayana Charitable Trust (formerly Gospel for Asia India), Love India Ministries and Last Hour Ministry — under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, according to The Times of India.
“We are not bringing foreign funds, as there is a standing revision order (on the FCRA registrations, normally given for a five-year period and then renewed thereafter,)” Believers Church spokesperson Fr. Sijo Panthapallil was quoted as saying.
The Ayana Charitable Trust alone received around $206 million, mostly from the United states, during the last financial year, the Times said.
The interior ministry “might take a decision within a week’s time,” Panthapallil hopes. “We are sure that we will get the registrations back next week. Our FCRA registrations are under revision for the last one year. They had sent us a letter asking for documents and we have submitted the required documents.”
India’s interior ministry cancelled foreign aid licenses of six organisations in 2016 and 10,011 in 2015, according to the Times.
SOURCE: Anugrah Kumar