A brief introduction into corporate social responsibility and solution approach to perfect this idea, written by KRISHNAMURTHY M.
India – a land of dreams, a land of hopes, is also a country with majority of its population under the mirages of opportunities. They look upon each day with a promise that gives them confidence to reach a level higher than yesterday.
But, whether this would be realized, is a matter of time which can be answered only by the gains of the masses. At a point of such infidelity, comes the CSR – made into a law in the Indian constitution. Speaking on which, it is by statute, that the law enforces business concerns to spend two percent of their profit towards activities that seek the upliftment of the people without any expectations in return.
A lot has been said on those lines but the relevant point left out each time. If the question arises whether or not, this law is effective, we doubt it is not. To pinpoint, the law particularly does not define the activities that pertain to account for CSR. As a matter of fact, it has been interpreted in many ways, each time in favour of the business concern.
Let us take a few examples, a particular cosmetic company is not happy to spend their profits on the primary education in rural areas, they feel they are no way connected with this activity. In another case, a conglomeration of brands hopes to sustain their raw material input through these activities. The companies have highly manipulated the law to perform activities which in turn support their own concerns. There is nothing wrong in this as the goal of CSR are met. On a primary level, it may look beneficial to the people but it invisibly forms a loop line connecting the beneficiary person towards the company.
At this point, there is a dire need to refine the law, to focus on productive activities that significantly increase the GDP of the nation. To be more specific, the industrial development, which is the key to sustained growth. What India needs is not only primary education, but chances to apply the 12 years of schooling and 4-5 years of graduation. To maximize the output from the industries, we need to improve the methods of production. Ways has to be implored to optimize the processes and activities involved in production.
In order to achieve this, we need to take the technology to the people who need them. The facilities offered to an educated person to perform a research or even experiment various prototypes is very less. It is highly restricted to only few percentage of the population. A person seeking instrumental support or to perform a soil test to find the quality of the soil, or even access the internet in rural areas finds it almost impossible to gain easy access. Even then, the quality of the service is very low.
The use of internet has been highly restricted to only educational and recreational purposes, instead the people should be taught to use the web for business and expanding their reach of the resources.
To realize all these dreams, we need to fortify our country with “technical centers” which are just like public libraries where any sort of technical help can be provided. In short, it takes the technology to the people to whom it has been developed and who actually need them. This not only provides employment opportunities but also helps in solving everyday problems in an easier and more risk free manner.
It would give changes to people to empower them to carry their work more effectively. Each company, under the CSR can direct their funds to establish such centers and maintain them. For eg: an automobile company can provide a technical service center which helps goods transporters to optimize the performance of large load carriers. This would enable in cheap transport of goods, which in turn helps in ways innumerable.
There are no frames in interpreting Social Responsibility, but the best would be the one that really benefits people in ways innumerable and aids in social upliftment, which is what the law is all about. Its time that this nation pays attention towards “technology towards masses”, rightfully using CSR as a great tool.