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QUETTA: The industries and commerce department of Balochistan has suspended governing bodies of 1,615 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) for their failure to submit information about them as required under the National Action Plan (NAP) to counter terrorism.

Saira Atta, director general of the department, said that more than 1,900 NGOs had been registered with the department, with 600 of them working in education sector.

Under the rules, she said, it was mandatory for the NGOs to provide the government their annual audit reports, details of their bank accounts, funding, donations and projects, information about foreigners working with them and copies of their visas and passports.

The official said that it was also necessary for the NGOs to submit their annual budgets and identify the areas where they were working.

She said that a notice was published in newspapers, asking the NGOs to submit required documents, including their registration certificates. The NGOs were warned that their registration would be suspended if they failed to submit required information within stipulated time.

As many as 1,615 NGOs failed to submit the documents, leading to suspension of their governing bodies, Ms Ata said. The governing bodies will be restored when the NGOs will submit the papers.

Nasarullah Bareach, a social worker who runs an educational NGO, said that Balochistan was a backward province which needed public-private partnership in education, health, drinking water and other sectors.

“NGOs are playing a great role in different sectors in remote areas of the province,” he added.

He said that suspension of governing bodies of the NGOs would adversely affect the projects launched by them.

However, Mr Bareach said that the NGOs should provide required information and documents to the authorities concerned.

Published in Dawn, March 20th, 2017