Bhubaneswar: With a view to structuring the CSR (corporate social responsibility) activities in Odisha, the state government has consulted the industry captains, corporate house leaders, the civil society and taken inputs from the people like the CSR authorities of Gujarat, said Industries minister Debi Prasad Mishra.
“Our goal is how to institutionalise CSR activities in Odisha and facilitate the corporate houses so that whatever kitty they are spending will not interfere in their spending process. The CSR should be well defined and meaningful so that sustainable development takes place and the corporate earn their reputation,” he said in his valedictory speech on “CSR activities by mainstream industries of Odisha” at the CSR Conclave 2016, organised by the premiere Odia channel OTV in the capital city today.
The minister said keeping this in view, the state government has decided to constitute a state level council and district councils to facilitate these things and will have a steering body. We will make a perfect strategy and in consultation with whatever inputs we have received to have a proper CSR strategy to see that the development really takes place and CSR spending becomes meaningful in Odisha.
He said the mandated CSR provision has now become a clear-cut responsibility of the corporate houses. Even though when there was no provision, the consciousness was there. But the social responsibility consciousness has definitely got a new impetus after this mandated provision. “You have to see that how the CSR behaviour with the changing pattern of behaviour and changes the corporate houses to adopt different innovative practices elsewhere in India and the world”, the minister pointed out.
He further said the corporate houses understand the ground reality that the state is one of the economic powerhouses in the country, particularly in industrial sector where several industrial houses are keen on investing their capital in the state. “We have seen that about 82 percent of the investments are either in the pipeline or they are grounded. The companies are eager to do their business for profits. But at the same time with the mandated provision, they should go beyond as they have a key role in bridging the gap between the ongoing government schemes being implemented in their periphery and the development initiative to be taken up by them like upgrading the skills of the people”, he observed.
Mishra also noted that the corporate houses ought to strive for the generation of income for inclusive growth in rural and far-off places and at the same time maintain and upgrade the ecological and cultural eco system in these areas.
Quoting a situational analysis conducted by the Industries department, the minister said 287 companies had contributed Rs 344.12 crore towards CSR activities in 2014-15 mostly on education, health, environmental protection, livelihood programmes etc.