Q.1 Wikimedia India to provide documentation on Legal Structure:
Submit current non-profit registration status (i.e. legal certificate of registration as non-profit being current and up-to-date for local reporting requirement
The original scanned copy of the Chapter’s Registration Document is already in the public domain.
Wikimedia Chapter(India) has a legal standing and is registered as a not-for-profit organisation in India under the Karnataka Societies Registration Act, 1960 and abides to rules and regulations within the Republic of India. The Chapter was registered via Registrar of Societies, Banglore Urban District Certificate No : SOR/BLU/DR/1137/10-11 dated 3rd January, 2011.
This information is also provided on public platforms such as Chapter’s Wiki and Mailing list. During different thematic discussions with the community, Chapter’s registration details are continuously shared as and when needed.
As a registered entity, Chapter submits its annual reports, annual general meeting updates amongst other organisational developments to the Registrar of Societies,subsequent to approval of reports and other documents in the Annual General Meeting (AGM).
Chapter receives several legal suits in India for unfavourable content on Wikimedia Projects by different applicants. Currently there are ongoing suits in different courts of India. All legal suits are issued on the basis of Chapter being a registered charitable organisational associate of Wikimedia Foundation. Wikimedia Foundation Legal Team is well-informed about the legal suits and usage of Chapter’s Registration document in the advocacy.
Submit action plan that describes how the chapter will work towards obtaining the 12A and FCRA licenses in the future, or, alternatively, how your group will resource your community programs otherwise.
Ever since 2014 with the change of political leadership in India, Government of India has tightened Foreign Contribution (Regulations) Act 2010 (FCRA) to counter money laundering, black money, terror funding, etc. This has an outcast on more than 20,000 institutions. The larger Indian community has also discussed the issue and requested Wikimedia Foundation to reconsider. Chapter is committed for pursuing FCRA License, however looking at the present situation it is difficult to commit on any deadlines. Wikimedia India is thankful to organisations who have come forward to provide consultation on legal and financial matters on charity basis. A certificate by a financial firm in this regard has been provided over email. Chapter expects to receive 12 A certificate within the next 12 months, which would help Chapter in receiving domestic funding via philanthropy by different corporate houses via Corporate Social Responsibility under Companies Act 2013. Several Wikimedia India present partners have also shown intent and the license would help. Besides that, Wikimedia India members would continue, as they do today, promote self-finance alternatives to support Chapter activities. It has already been demonstrated that Chapter is undergoing activities through (a) Collaboration with Government (b) Collaboration with Academic Institutes (c) Zero-budget self-financed initiatives. Chapter would also try do local fundraising drives like before.
Q.2 Wikimedia India to demonstrate Open Governance:
Explain how the current EC was elected, how many members were physically present and how many members voted via proxy.
Wikimedia India respects community self-governance. Elections were guided by three volunteers (representing different Indian communities), a community committee, under its publicly available charter. Wikimedia India recognises the role of outside observers and transparency for bringing fairness and sanctity to the election process. Chapter understands documentation to be a tool that improves community health.Therefore, all important election updates were also shared on Chapter’s Wiki public domain pages (non-internal) and India Mailing List. The call for volunteers to be on the Election Committee along with the election charter were first shared on Wednesday, 18th January,2017 on India Mailing List alongwith member’s mailing list. Subsequent to the appointment of the election committee members, all the details on the elections were shared with the larger community via India Mailing List Friday, 10th March, 2017. The list of all eligible voters along with their respective city was put forward in public domain on Chapter’s Wiki for visibility and to maintain a community audit. All nominations were then scrutinised by the election committee and discussions floated on Election discussion page, Mailing List etc. Discussions included notices,guidelines, views, opinion, etc. Everything was documented in public domain. The willingness to improve on each and everyday, new stringent guidelines were proposed by the Election committee and also shared with the wider public. These guidelines included in quotes as shared then by Election committee “(a) All of the ballot papers have been signed by one of the election committee members. This is to ensure that when the votes will be counted, we are sure that the ballot papers are genuine. (b) All ballot papers have the original coin stamp of Wikimedia India. (c ) Upon receiving the ballot papers, the sign of the election committee member and seal will be checked to ensure the validity of the ballot paper. (d) On the ballot paper, we will also cross verify the sign of the members with their membership form and also their member id, to make sure we received the same papers that were sent to them.” After having received no objectionable views by either members or the wider audience, the election committee adopted the said guidelines. Ballots have been adopted as a standard practice for contesting elections by different Wikimedia Chapters and so does India Chapter adopt them.
22 candidates representing more than 10 different communities filed their nominations out of which 20 nominations were accepted by the election committee and two candidates later withdrew their nominations. The ballots were then generated for 18 candidates. All feedback, complaints, concerns etc were publicly documented on the discussion page. Also, two different IRCs were undertaken for speedy responses and the said IRC chat logs have been reported on the Chapter’s discussion page for visibility.
All ballots by post were received at Chapter’s registered address, as informed to the community and as present in Chapter’s registration document. The registered address is the official office for Centre For Internet and Society. Chapter at present operates from a different shared office space. On election counting day, all postal ballots in not-disturbed/not-tampered condition were handed to the election committee members who brought them to the Chapter present shared office space for counting. The counting happened in the presence of several community members including the presence of several contesting candidates.
The elections witnessed a unique situation where-by for the 7th position there was a tie amongst three different candidates. A chit-pull system was used by the election committee and it was informed on member’s mailing list and with no objections, the results were considered accepted and the result page documented all facts publicly such as votes received by post/hand, tie amongst candidates etc.
b. Submit documentation demonstrating how Wikimedia India used to delegate (proxy) voting.
As per the Chapter’s bylaws, which have been accepted by the then Chapter's Committee, Wikimedia India has a provision for proxy votes for its Institutional members and Foreign Ordinary Individual however, it had no institutional member or foreign ordinary member hence no proxy votes took place. Few members although did pass their sealed ballots to community members visiting the polling station, however they were sealed and subject to scrutiny as per the guidelines and recorded under ‘hand’ ballots separately. Out of the total 109 ballots, 81 ballots (74%) were received by post and remaining by hand. For all ballots received by post or hand, the new ballot verification method as proposed by the election committee keeping the wider Wikimedia community in loop was adopted. 01 ballot was found invalid by the election committee and the said was also documented publicly on the Election page.
3. Wikimedia India to demonstrate Open Active Contributor Involvement:
Explain how new members are recruited and what is the current spread of chapter members across the country by region?
Wikimedia India recruits new members via several initiatives such as Invitation on Mailing List, in-person during Wiki-offline events, etc. Several members also follow the membership guidelines as present on Chapter’s Wiki and apply for membership.
Chapter has at present 57 members such that as per membership form they belong to
Submit a list of at least 20 active contributors who are members of the chapter.
To maintain User’s privacy this data has been shared over email. We also request you to kindly sign the letter of acknowledgement that this data has been obtained for a regular audit process and will be used for any gains or to breach any privacy as per the laws governing the Republic of India.
4.Wikimedia India to demonstrate Capacity to run program activities:
Explain how many programs the chapter executed in the past 12 months and how many people were involved.
All Chapter reports until the previous financial year are in the public domain and have been repeatedly shared with the community for review. Chapter has been involved with more than 100 editors which includes both New Users Created and Working with existing active contributors. The said could be ascertained from Chapter’s report. No public money was spent on any of the programs and all of them were self-financed by Chapter members.
Chapter members have also been assisting via sharing its learning and experiences to the community, User Groups, Allied Organisations on good-faith basis under its endeavour to make the local communities self-sustainable. Some of these include helping local communities organise conferences in Delhi with Hindi Wikimedians User Group and Kerala with Wikimedians of Kerala User Group, help set-up Wikimedians for offline wikis User Group, imparting skills to volunteers during Project Tiger Community Consultation, reviewing and providing suggestions to CIS-A2K in their annual workplan. Facilitated Government partnership such as Partnership with Government of Maharashtra to host workshops for Marathi Wikimedia Projects where 17 workshops during 2018 and 19 workshops in 2019 have happened, Wiki For School initiative in Kerala etc. At the International level, (a) Sharing Chapter experiences on Partnerships and Finance under Movement Strategy 2030 (b) Proposing Conflict Management solutions for Chapter’s during Affiliates meeting (c) Sharing and learnings best practices on Hackathons, Gender Gaps via Poster Presentations (d) Displaying India’s unique diversity as an innovative tool (e) Women's Edit-a-thon on Women's day in 2018 (dashboard) and 2019(dashboard) in collaboration with Art+Feminism (f) Chapter Equipment Support program which was revamped at larger scale as Project Tiger in India and Project GLOW worldwide .
Chapter has also been defending Wikimedia communities in several legal suits across India.
Submit an action plan that describes how the chapter will improve its capacity to successfully execute programs and ensure that it does not take on programs beyond its capacity.
The Affiliations Committee informed Wikimedia India that it had left roughly 200 images unreviewed during the Wiki Loves Monuments in India 2016 competition. As previously stated to the Affiliations Committee members, it was a human error. Wikimedia India has previously hosted the Wiki Loves Monuments Program in 2012 with roughly 15000 images, in 2013 with roughly 11000 images while the 2016 recorded roughly 37000 images. As there were a large number of images, missing out on those 200 images was purely a human error. Chapter also executed the Wiki Loves Monuments program in 2017 where the International first prize belonged to India.
Chapter is for the communities and its volunteers and in any case of it taking programs beyond its capacity, it would research, investigate and then document the facts, statements and put them in public domain for communities to reflect. These would then form part of Chapter's reports.
Submit an action plan that describes how the chapter will ensure that it reports on its activities and finances on time, as per chapter agreement.
Chapter will endeavour to submit all its report within the stipulated time as per the Chapter agreement. In case, it cannot, it will inform the community on a prior notice and based on community conversations it would inform Wikimedia Foundation for the delays, if ever.