All you need to Know before Starting an NGO in India

calendar09 Jun, 2020
timeReading Time: 4 Minutes
Starting an NGO in India

Starting an NGO in India requires an influential vision and dedication of a group of people or an individual to work for the progress of underprivileged ones living in an unclean environment. If you are concerned about the sufferings of poor and needy people and if you receive signals to come forward and support the disadvantaged ones, but haven’t done anything yet due to lack of a platform, then setting up an NGO would serve you the perfect platform to express your unconditional love towards the people living in marginalized communities craving for blissful moments and a better tomorrow.

Various organizations are into charitable activities and have climbed the pinnacle of success in their charitable works for different segments of society. For instance, from satiating the hunger of underprivileged children and women to skill development, child trafficking, children with physical disabilities, abandoned widows, policy advocacy and elderly or senior care, etc., different types of NGOs are serving the particular or few of the segments of the marginalized societies.

Starting an NGO in India requires resources, skills, knowledge along with aid from a group of volunteers, legal advisors and government agencies. Although the process of establishing NGOs is somewhat similar in all the countries, rules and legislations vary from nation to nation. If you are interested in starting an NGO in India, you must have your goals and purpose clear.

With the formation of a good number of Non-governmental organizations in India, solutions for social issues are coming up every day. Still, a lot more is required to be done for upgrading the lives of poverty-stricken ones. It’s essential for people to keep themselves aware of their rights and power. NGOs exist to empower those people who are unaware of their powers and legitimate rights.

Starting an NGO in India- Formation of an NGO

Before starting an NGO in India, getting the right people as the members of the board is necessary. Therefore, initiate the process of starting an NGO in India by having a board of members with a similar goal and desire to upgrade the economic status of unfortunate, poor people as well as those people who know legal matters and procedures must come forward and work together.

Read our article:NGO Registration – Step by Step Procedure

Preparation of the Document

There is a requirement for an NGO to prepare a document supplying the necessary details-

  • Organization’s name
  • Address of the organization
  • Objectives as well as the mission of the NGOs
  • Information related to HR and staffing
  • Crucial details regarding the governing body members

Appropriate Laws and Procedures related to Governance

  • The formation of an NGO takes place as a section 8 Company, whose governance is as per the Companies Act of 2013[1].
  • Except this, no uniform law exists that govern the NGOs running in India.
  • The management and governance of trust are as per the Public Trust Act of all the states along with the Societies Registration Act looking after the governance of Societies in India is subject to Amendments in the state.
  • The demand for a compact law for the governance, responsibilities as well as management of the NGOs in India is still awaiting a significant response from the government.

Starting an NGO in India- Registration of an NGO

Registering an NGO can take place within three disciplines in India-

Registration of NGO

As a Society

As prescribed in the Societies Registration Act of 1860, an NGO can get registered as a society with a minimum of seven or more than seven members. The names of the members must get subscribed into the Memorandum of Association. Generally, the purpose behind the formation of societies is to promote charitable causes concerning art, culture and education without any financial motive involved. All Indian States have adopted the Societies Registration Act of 1860 while many brought amendments in the original one as per their wish. Society bylaws play a crucial role in governing societies.

Under Societies Registration Act, 1860 the societies that can get registered are-

  • The military orphans
  • Societies established for promoting Science or Literature
  • Charitable Societies        
  • Societies established for promoting Fine Arts

As a Company

If an individual or a person is keenly interested in starting an NGO in India for promoting non-profit purposes such as arts, trade, religion, social welfare, science, sports, environmental protection, education, research purposes and more, then he/she should get the NGO registered as a Company under the purview of section 8 of the Company’s Act 2013. After getting registered as a company, attaching the term “limited” at the end is not required at all. However, it is utmost important for the company to mention words like Council, Foundation, etc. in the name. Incomes and profits of the company can get utilized in promotion of the company’s goals.

As a Trust

Trust is also a separate legal entity in the same way as Society and Section 8 Company. The Trust Founder would make an initial contribution to the corpus of the Trust and would provide the objectives for which the corpus can come into usage. Furthermore, the Founder of the Trust will set the mission as well as the vision of the Trust. Entities that get themselves registered as a Trust are those who endeavour to provide education, eradicate poverty, along with granting medical relief as well. In case of the charitable trust, the minimum requirement is two along with no limit for maximum.

Laws Regulating NGO Registration

NGO registration process in India falls under the jurisdiction of the laws. The laws that govern NGOs in India are-


If you are starting an NGO in India, you need to stick to your objective of working for the welfare of entire impoverished communities and societies along with upliftment of lives of people living in reduced circumstances. Furthermore, starting an NGO in India requires an interested person to ensure that people sharing common charitable goals are coming together as the members of the board. At Corpbiz, our experts would help you in the entire registration process.

Read our article:Guide on NGO Registration: Types and Benefits

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