Foreign Aid for Indian NGOs
Problem or Solution?
Routledge India – 2010 – 384 pages
This book explores what difference development aid has made to the size, complexity, style of functioning, values and future direction of the NGO sector in India. It does this, first, by giving a comprehensive documentation of the experience of Indian NGOs with foreign aid since Independence. Simultaneously, it also analyses, in a broad historical perspective, some of the issues which are the subject of contemporary debate regarding the voluntary sector and aid, such as who decides ‘what’ is development and ‘how’ it should be brought about; whether foreign donors have hidden agendas, and if their aid amounts to cultural imperialism; and whether aid has made NGOs more self-reliant.
The book also looks at the tripartite relationship between NGOs, donors, and governments, examining, for instance, whether the government is justified in imposing restrictions on receipt of funds by NGOs on the grounds that terrorist activities and religiously motivated communal strife are often financed with funds from abroad, with NGOs being used as fronts for both.
Pushpa Sundar is an independent consultant and writer. She is Chair (non-executive) of Winrock International India, and Member of Governing Body, Partners in Change, a non-profit organisation. She is also Senior Advisor with The Nand and Jeet Khemka Foundation.