Industry – both public and private sectors – should adopt one village each towards ensuring inclusive development, according to Anant Gangaram Geete, Minister of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises.
Opening a seminar on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) organised by CII and Department of Public Enterprises, he appreciated CPSEs work in CSR Activities and their support to Government in initiatives such as the Swachh Bharat Mission, under which PSE have contributed in building of large number of toilets, the Minister said that such efforts will go a long way in realizing a transformation in public health, sanitation and hygiene.
The Minister urged the Public Sectors and other Corporates to take initiatives in similar scale in other areas which would contribute in the development of rural areas. He also highlighted the need for building an environment of trust with the local partners while engaging with them in their development.
He cited the example of Ratnagiri where the local people and industry came together as partners in development. While the locals supported with land for setting up the industry, local youth were provided the requisite skills which benefitted both the locals and the industry. He urged the companies on coming up with innovative ways of partnership which can be a win –win situation for all stakeholders. This will go a long way in further improving the quality of lives of people, said Shri Geete.
The Minister also unveiled a compendium prepared by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) – Transforming Lives through CSR, highlighting the historical journey of CSR within CPSEs. Geete said that, CPSEs have played a leading role in discharging their CSR obligations.
Madhukar Gupta, Additional Secretary, Department of Public Enterprises, said that the Government has liberalized CSR and given freedom to the public sector companies to innovate their CSR initiatives to contribute in nation building. He said that it is a great opportunity and the world is also looking up to how India is experimenting with this opportunity.
Gupta said, “ It is not only funds that are important, but the way in which we leverage our inherent expertise and the human resources to innovate and spend in the areas where there is maximum incremental impact is also important.” He urged the companies to leverage this opportunity and build bridges by bringing together different stakeholders for the cause of nation building.
Emphasizing on the renewed thrust of companies on CSR, B Prasada Rao, Chairman, CII Council on Public Sector Enterprises and Chairman and Managing Director, BHEL said that evolving from mere philanthropy to social responsibility, the recent years have witnessed the role of CSR developing significantly. There appears to be a discernible trend that while CSR remains largely restricted to community development, it is getting more strategic in nature and is getting linked with business in which the companies are engaged in.