New Delhi: “Industry organizations such as the Confederation of Indian Industry should function as Self Regulatory Organizations as good regulations create a good society,” said Mr Arun Maira at the National Corporate Responsibility Summit held on Thursday, 19th August 2010 at New Delhi organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry in partnership with the National Foundation for Corporate Governance.
Mr Maira emphasized that Corporate Responsibility cannot be seen as an optional activity, peripheral to the core business of the organization. The government is responsible to the people and governments have to draw in the corporate sector to fulfill their mandate. Since the corporate sector claims that it will do the right thing voluntarily and does not want restrictions imposed on it by government, it must impose self regulation on itself, he explained. “Industry associations must impose regulations on its members and take action against companies that do not abide by these regulations after being given a chance to reform”.
Mr R Bandyopadhyay, Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs invited the corporate sector to join hands with the government to take forward the agenda of inclusive growth. “Growth without equity leads to unrest and instability”, said Mr Bandyopadhyay and added that the movement towards inclusive growth could be facilitated by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs. Different companies have varying priorities and thoughts on how best to fulfil their economic, social and environmental responsibilities. These need to be integrated into business strategies.
Mr Nasser Munjee, Summit Chairman & Chairman, Development Credit Bank pointed out that while India’s economic progress was impressive; its performance on other parameters such as health, education, infrastructure needed enabling interventions.
Discussing the constrained system, speakers examined key policies and challenges and deliberated upon whether governments should retain the responsibility of providing quality social infrastructure, such as schools and healthcare or should the private sector play a larger role in developing these crucial services. The speakers also discussed how to encourage Indian industry’s engagement on this front.
Mr Gotabaya Dasanayaka, Senior Specialist on Employers Activities, International Labour Organization emphasized that healthy, educated populace was a pre-requisite for a healthy, educated workforce and therefore CR was actually in the best interest of the corporate sector.
Acknowledging that the consensus for Public Private People Partnerships is overwhelming, specific initiatives that would lend themselves better to PPPP and the specific action agenda required for scaling-up such initiatives was also discussed. Successive speakers also analyzed why partnerships both between government, the corporate sector and NGOs and between different groups within each category continued to be problematic and how these could be streamlined for win-win outcomes.