In another step towards bridging the gaps in priority sectors of development, State Government has initiated a proposal for institutionalization of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds and projects of the corporate houses operating in the State.
The proposal was discussed at a high level meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi in Secretariat Conference hall today.
Principal Secretary Industry Sanjeev Chopra outlined various facets of the proposal for discussion.
Considering the proposal, the Chief Secretary directed the department to prepare a detail data base of the industries and corporate houses operating in the State who come under the orbit of CSR regulations, the sources added.He also directed the officials to identify the areas of converged action.
Development Commissioner R Balakrishnan advised the department to look in to various models and practices followed in different parts of the country.
He said the model most suited for State should be adopted, the sources said.
Mr.Chopra said, as per preliminary calculation there are near about 287 corporate houses who are taking up some or other CSR activity through their own agencies.
Notably, in 2014-15 a total of around Rs 344 crore has been allocated by all these corporate houses towards CSR activities.
Out of this, around Rs.96 crore has been spent in infrastructure development, Rs.71crore has been utilized in educational development, around Rs. 51 crore has been invested in health sector, Rs.41 crore has been spent for environmental protection, Rs.29 crore provided for core livelihood support, Rs.12 crore invested in vocational training and Rs.44 crore has been spent in other CSR activities, the sources said.
The fund allocation and spending pattern show substantial disparity among the districts in getting CSR projects.
Around 10 districts have received 90 per cent of the CSR resources while some districts have been left out, the meeting was informed. Many of the CSR projects also fail to have any countable contribution towards priority sectors of the State’s development agenda, it is learnt.
Mr.Balakrishnan emphasized that formation of a CSR council would help in effective planning and implementation of CSR interventions.
It would also facilitate the CSR activities and spending by the companies and help them report on developmental outcomes and impact of their projects, he is understood to have said.
This would make the entire gamut of CSR operations more open, transparent and target oriented. The meeting also deliberated over the objectives and modus-opreandi of the proposed Council.
Principal Secretary Revenue & Disaster Management Mona Sharma, Principal Secretary Rural Development Madhusudan Padhi, Special Secretary Finance Ashok Kumar Meena, Panchayati Raj Secretary Deo Ranjan Kumar Singh along with other senior officers from departments of Industry, Planning & Convergence , Finance and IPICOL participated in deliberations, the sources said.