Department of public enterprises planning to set up a sustainability fund with World Bank with the money collected thus
Jasleen Kaur | July 11, 2013
Soon, public sector undertakings (PSUs) unable to spent their CSR funds will have to part with it as the department of public enterprises (DPE) is mulling over setting up a sustainability fund in collaboration with the World Bank.
The DPE issued a revised guideline on CSR in April this year according to which the unspent money will be subsumed into the sustainability fund which will then be used to finance social responsibility projects.
Since 2010, a total of Rs 2,700 crore has been lying unused with the central public sector enterprises (Rs 300 crore in the year 2010-11; Rs 1,200 crore each in 2011-12 and 2012-13).
OP Rawat, the DPE secretary, says that the department is focusing on the implementation of the new guidelines, adding that workshops have been conducted across the country to create awareness regarding the same. However, the mere thought of having to part with funds has not gone down well with the PSUs. Many have raised flags on the clause on the lapse of funds not used within three years.
Rawat says that PSUs are eventually able to utilise only Rs 600-700 crore of the Rs 2,000 crore set aside annually under the CSR overhead.
“If the companies fail to spend the required amount on CSR activities, the fund would be taken up by us to form sustainability fund. We are planning to form it with the help of the World Bank. The idea is to make sure they use it within the fixed time frame,” he said.
Under the earlier guidelines, the unitilised CSR fund did not lapse. Instead, they were carried forward to the next financial year.
The new guidelines, the department expects, will enforce more seriousness among the PSUs’ administrations regarding corporate social responsibility.
Under the new framework, central PSUs will have to utilise the unspent part of the amount earmarked for CSR within two financial years. They will also have to explain why the funds were spent in the year they were sanctioned.
According to the secretary, only a handful of the Ratna companies have been able to spend the full amount, ONGC and Coal India being the most notable ones.
“Middle level or smaller companies have always been hesitant to spend on CSR activities. They face pressure from NGOs and local people to design spending according to their needs,” he adds.
The department’s efforts at sensitising the senior executive of the PSUs seems to have paid off with companies like GAIL and ONGC swinging into immediate action in the aftermath of the Uttarakhand calamity. Both companies are now undertaking rehabilitation activities for villages that were destroyed by the flood.
The much hyped ‘double engine’ model of governance on which the BJP is seeking votes has utterly failed, and Mumbai and Maharashtra have had to face some of the worst effects of economic slowdown, former prime minister Manmohan Singh has said. A lot of problems facing Maharashtra
A three-term Rajya Sabha member, Sanjay Raut is the Shiv Sena spokesperson and its voice in parliament. He is also the executive editor of Marathi newspaper Samana, started by Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray. Raut spoke with Geetanjali Minhas on his party’s seat-sharing agreement
Ashish Shelar, 47, was the president of the Mumbai city unit of the BJP, before he became the minister of school education, sports and youth welfare in the Maharashta government this year. He has represented the Vandre West constituency in the state assembly and seeking re-election. In a chat with
The Nobel Prize in economics for 2019 goes to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer "for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty." The prize, known as “The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel”, was announc
Prime minister Narendra Modi has accepted president Xi Jinping’s invitation to visit China in 2020 for their third informal summit after Wuhan and Mamallapuram, indicating both sides’ realization of the importance of the mechanism which gives the two leaders of the Asian giants an opportunity t
Dharma: Hinduism and Religions in India By Chaturvedi Badrinath Edited by Tulsi Badrinath Penguin, 194+ xiii pages, Rs 499 How to live: That is the most fundamental question of human existence.