The Indo-Islamic Cultural Foundation (IICF) Trust on Friday said the Income-Tax department had agreed to grant tax exemption to its donors under Section 80G. A Trust official said the organisation had been “starved of funds without an 80G certification that exempts donors from income tax”.

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The Sunni Waqf Board has formed the IICF Trust to build a mosque in Ayodhya district’s Dhannipur village as per the order of the Supreme Court in the Ayodhya land dispute case.

“We were granted the certificate for exemption nine months after we applied for it. The Trust was formed on July 29 last year and had applied for tax exemption on September 1 last year,” said Trust secretary Athar Hussain.

Section 80G of the I-T Act allows donations made to specified relief funds and charitable organisations to be considered deductions from gross total income before being eligible for taxable income. Last year, a similar exemption was given for the Ram temple in Ayodhya.

“The objections and queries raised by the Income Tax department and the procedural delay impeded donations for the construction of the mosque-hospital of IICF. Contributions from abroad too remained choked in the absence of FCRA nod as going for FCRA, having 80G is a requirement,” said Hussain.

He added, “We have not launched any campaign for donations. Till now, well-wishers donated to the Trust voluntarily. We will now seek contribution from selected donors as now we have the tax exemption of 80G and will also go for FCRA.”

The Trust official said the entire project had been held up because of the delay. Along with the mosque, a hospital, an Indo-Islamic Research Centre and a community kitchen will be built on the five acres of land allotted by the state government following the Supreme Court’s orders. The research centre will also comprise a library and a museum.

“We have collected around Rs 22 lakh till now,” Hussain said, adding, “We will never have a campaign to collect funds. It will be in the public domain that we are building a mosque along with other amenities. Those who want to donate can do so, but there won’t be a campaign. We already have a commitment from some people – in India and abroad for donations.”

On Monday, the IICF had submitted the drawings of the maps of the proposed mosque to the Ayodhya Development Authority for approval.

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