Mother Teresa charity in India gets back access to foreign funds

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Mother Teresa won the Nobel Peace Prize and was later declared a saint (AFP/Dibyangshu SARKAR) (Dibyangshu SARKAR)

The Indian government renewed permission for late Catholic nun Mother Teresa's charity to receive foreign funds, weeks after rejecting it, the organisation said Saturday.

On Christmas Day the Narendra Modi government moved to cut off foreign funding to the Missionaries of Charity and refused to renew its licence under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

Charities and non-profit firms need to register under FCRA to receive money from abroad.

"The FCRA application has now been renewed," Sunita Kumar, a close aide to Mother Teresa, told AFP.

The Missionaries of Charity, which runs shelter homes across India, was founded in 1950 by the late Mother Teresa, a Catholic nun who devoted most of her life to helping the poor in the eastern city of Kolkata.

She won the Nobel Peace Prize and was later declared a saint.

India's home ministry issued a statement in December saying it was rejecting the renewal application because the charity did not meet "eligibility conditions" and that "adverse inputs were noticed".

Last week, Oxfam India said the Indian government had blocked its access to international funds, a move which it said would have severe consequences for its humanitarian work.

The Modi government has been accused of cutting off access to funding of charities and rights groups in the country.

Amnesty International announced in 2020 that it was halting operations in India after the government froze its bank accounts.

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