With rising fiscal deficit and leakages in the welfare schemes, CSR is seen as a useful additional avenue to address the problems of society in a cost effective manner and thereby helping India to achieve an inclusive growth. Comment.

With rising fiscal deficit and leakages in the welfare schemes, CSR is seen as a useful additional avenue to address the problems of society in a cost effective manner and thereby helping India to achieve an inclusive growth. Comment.
Approach:
  • Briefly discuss about CSR as a mandatory provision in India.
  • Discuss with examples, how CSR activities provide alternative as well as additional services to the needy
  • Conclude appropriately
Model Answer :
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a way in which companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations. For example, firms in polluting industries organize CSR activities related to the environment, while firms in the iron and steel and power sector spend more on local community development, as their projects cause large-scale displacement. The government of India made it mandatory for companies to undertake CSR activities (worth 2 per cent of their profits) under the Companies Act, 2013.
India is at the threshold of demographic dividend, and there is an urgent need for the creation of human and physical capital to reap its rewards. Public delivery of goods and services is often riddled with corruption and bureaucratic inefficiency and the welfare schemes are crippled with leakages. In light of this, CSR initiatives are seen as a useful alternative to governmental provision of merit goods.
Usefulness of CSR:
CSR Activities for Marginalized Sections:
  • Providing literacy and vocational education and removing barriers to access and employability
  • Facilitating livelihoods in rural areas by creating job opportunities through SHGs and micro enterprises, thereby reducing the need for migration
  • Setting up old age homes, day care centers, and such other facilities for senior citizens.
  • Supplementing Government’s efforts to make cities slum free.
CSR – the Harbinger for Empowerment:
  • Govt. flagship programmes like Make in India, Start-Up India, Skill India, Digital India are being promoted through CSR projects.
  • Tata Motors collaborates with a number of industrial training institutes to conduct skill development programmes. Some of the companies collaborate with government schools and support the mid-day meal programmes.
  • Tata Consultancy services and Bharti Airtel, as a part of their CSR initiatives, are building toilets for girls in schools in support of government’s Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
Conclusion:
Innovative CSR projects that are economically viable, scalable and replicable in demographic context can have deep rooted societal impact that will mainstream the marginalized. We need to tap the enormous resource pool and the organizational capacity of the corporate sector to design viable and innovative CSR projects. It would be useful for community organizations to think more strategically about the prospective corporate partners which can help them achieve their goals.

Subjects : Yojna summary

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