Beyond News: Helpline for women to participate in local elections, EKTA, Madurai & The Hunger Project

Times of India has a story about how a NGO, called EKTA, in Madurai had established a helpline to improve the participation of women in local body elections. The same news was covered a couple of weeks ago in The Hindu as well. People who call this helpline are later invited to attend a workshop where EKTA and Hunger Project India (another NGO) “sensitise” women on various aspects of polling, cash-for-votes etc. EKTA received over 1,000 calls in a span of 12 days. Six thousand people living in 60 villages are planned to be targeted in this campaign.

Wait. Are they just NGOs, or are they FCRA-NGOs? You guessed it right. Both EKTA and The Hunger Project India are FCRA-NGOs.

EKTA works on Gender Mainstreaming, Gender and Governance, Gender and Human Rights, Addressing Violence against Women, Girl Child Rights. The Hunger Project India works on Empowering Girls, Gender Discrimination etc.

EKTA’s address is: Bethel Nagar, Bible Bhavan Street, Bypass Road, Ponmeni, Madurai-625010. [Author’s note: This mainstreaming of RoL terminology is common place in Tamil Nadu. No wonder, temple idols are getting stolen from that State]. Its FCRA Registration Number: TN/75940284. The Darpan portal of Niti Aayog provides EKTA’s Chief Functionaries as: Bimla Chandrasekar, Ranjani Murthy & Jesu Rethinam.

The Hunger Project India’s official address is: 18/1, Aruna Asaf Ali Marg, Qutab Institutional Area, New Delhi-110067. However, its FCRA registration has been done in Mumbai with the Number: MH/83345981. The Hunger Project has offices in many countries, with its headquarters in USA. The Indian office is headed by Ms. Rita Sarin.

The following Table provides the annual foreign funds received by EKTA & The Hunger Project as gleaned from the FCRA website.


Ekta’s donors include: Christian World Service-New Zealand, CESVI-Italy and The Hunger Project (LOL!)

The Hunger Project India’s donors include: Its worldwide offices, Norwegian Embassy and The Asia Foundation-USA. I am worried about the last donor. We do not know about donors to Hunger Project’s worldwide (outside India) offices. Hence, our worry is limited here.

Pray, tell me, did Times of India or The Hindu tell you about the foreign funded characteristics of these NGOs, in its news story? Shouldn’t India know? Hence this Post. Please spread the word. Thanks.


Beyond News: Helpline for women to participate in local elections, EKTA, Madurai & The Hunger Project