India Philanthropy Law

Report Last updated: April 2023

Indian culture places great emphasis on Daana (giving). The ancient philosophy of Nishkama Karma – “do good without the expectation of getting a reward” – continues to profoundly influence many peoples’ lives. In keeping with this philosophy, Daana is widely practiced and can take various forms, including Vastra Daana (giving clothing), Anna Daana (giving grain), or Shram Daana (giving voluntary service). Every individual or household is expected to help the needy and the suffering in some way. At the national level, India’s legal framework is considered supportive of philanthropic giving.

ICNL’s India Philanthropy Law Report unpacks this environment and the present-day legal framework for philanthropy law. Additionally, our India FAQs provide more context on civil society and philanthropy in the country.

Explore our collection of visual materials below:

India FAQ 1 - FCRA final

FAQ 1: Foreign Contribution Regulation Act

The Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) regulates the acceptance and use of foreign contributions by certain entities.

India FAQ 2 - Income Tax Act final

FAQ 2: Income Tax

Nonprofits that are established for charitable purposes are exempt from tax. Read our FAQ to learn more about the conditions and regulations governing these exemptions.

India FAQ 3 - Corporate Social Responsibility final

FAQ 3: Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is mandatory under the Indian Companies Act of 2013. Explore how CSR affects nonprofits in our FAQ.

India FAQ 4 - GST final

FAQ 4: Goods & Services Tax

India’s GST is one of the world’s most complex laws of its kind – and it applies to charitable organizations. Learn about it here.

India FAQ 5 - Lokpal Act final

FAQ 5: Lokpal & Lokayukta Act

The Lokpal and Lokayukta Act 2013 is intended to regulate and control corruption in public institutions. Read our FAQ to see how the Act also applies to nonprofits.