An overview of Philanthropy in India for the year 2010: INDIACSR report


By Rusen Kumar

Mahatma Gandhi ji said, “We must be the change we wish to see in the world.”

This the fact that some 42 percent of Indians, or 455 millions people, live on less than 1.25 dollars a day, according to World Bank and India’s statistics on health, infant mortality and malnutrition are worse than those for sub-Saharan Afirca.

The potential of individual giving by high net-worth individual (HNIs) can be immense. Even in the US, of the dollars 303 billion is annual giving over 2 percent of GDP, 75 percent come from individuals. Charitable giving in India probably totaled about $7.5 billion (Rs 3,487.12 crore at an exchange rate of Rs. 46.49 per dollar) in 2009, according to a study by Bain & Co.

A close look at India’s growing class of wealthy individuals leaves no doubt that they have the capacity to be more active givers. Bain research shows that nearly 40 percent of the nation’s wealth is controlled by the top 5 percent of India’s households. Breaking that down even more, the wealthiest 1 percent controls about 16 percent of the national wealth.

As India’s economy grows at a fast clip, so do the number of wealthy individuals. Bain & Co. research shows that there are over 115,000 high-net-worth individuals in India today.

The year 2010 was remarkable in terms of charity by corporate leaders. Education is favorite field for CEOs.

Recent major donors for the year 2010 include Anand Mahindra, Ajay Piramal, Azim Premji, Kalpana Morparia, Naveen Jindal, Ratan Tata, Shiv Nadar, Vineet Nayyar and Vineet Nayar.

Azim Premji, Chairman of Wipro and India’s third richest man has transferred  about 8.6% stake worth over 8,846 crore rupees to a private trust – Azim Premji Trustee Co Pvt Ltd – controlled by him. Ramachandra Guha, a respected Indian historian, earlier said this was the third big wave of public philanthropy in recent Indian history.

Major high net-worth individual Philanthropist in the year 2010 are:

Anand Mahindra
Vice-Chairman and Managing Director of Mahindra and Mahindra
Month : October 2010
Charity Wealth : Rs. 44 crore ( USD 10 million )
Area : Education

Anand Mahindra ,Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Mahindra and Mahindra has given USD 10 million (rupees 44 crore) to Harvard’s Humanities Centre for the University’s humanities program. This is the one of the “largest gifts” given to the Havard Humanities Centre. The money has been given in honour of his mother Indira Mahindra. Mr Mahindra had graduated from Harvard in 1977 and earned an MBA degree in 1981.

The money will be used to promote interdisciplinary exchanges though scholarships, panel discussions, conferences and workshops at Harvard. The subjects of seminars from the center this year range from “Modernism” and “Italian Studies” to “Music, Sensory Ecologies and the Body” and “Cross-Cultural Poetics and Rhetoric.” The department will  be named the Mahindra Humanities Centre.

Few Indians have  funds for the study of humanities or social sciences. Most give to the study of engineering or sciences. Anand Mahindra studied films and architecture before joining the  Harvard Business School.

Ajay Piramal
Chairman of Piramal Healthcare
Month: December 2010
Charity Wealth : Rs. 200 crore
Area : Education

Ajay Piramal’s Piramal Healthcare, leading pharma firm is going to spend up to Rs 200 crore  in charity, to br used mainly for healthcare and education. This is by far the largest Corporate Social Responsibility investment being made by a pharma company in India. Company’s shareholders have passed the resolution, relating to contribution to charitable and other funds, by overwhelming requisite majority. The resolution gives the board the authority to contribute up to Rs 200 crore for socio-economic development. The company has said that such contributions will not directly relate to the business of the company or the welfare of its employees.

Azim Premji
Chairman of Wipro Technologies
Month : December 2010
Charity Wealth : Rs. 8846 crore ( USD 2 Billion )
Area : Education

Azim Premji, Chairman of IT giant, Wipro and India’s third richest man has transferred  about 8.6% stake worth over 8,846 crore rupees to a private trust – Azim Premji Trustee Co Pvt Ltd – controlled by him. The trust will use the fund to take up educational initiatives presently being carried out under the aegis of the Azim Premji Foundation. The money will also be spent on setting up the Azim Premji University in Bangalore. The Azim Premji Foundation, founded in 2001, presently undertakes several philanthropic activities, funded directly by the Wipro chairman.

Wipro Limited is a giant information technology services corporation headquartered in Bangalore, India. It has interests varying from information technology, consumer care, lighting, engineering and health care businesses. Azim Premji, 65,  ranks 28th in the world’s  richest, according to estimates by Forbes magazine.

Kalpana Morparia
CEO, JP Morgan India
Month : December 2010
Charity Wealth: Rs. 1 Crore
Area: Education

CEO of JP Morgan India Ms Kalpana Morparia donated her Rs 1.5 crore to BHARTI FOUNDATION. A month ago she visited the Bharti Foundation and went out on a field trip. She was bowled over by the model and wrote out a cheque for Rs 1.5 crore. Her money, not JP Morgan’s. It’s a wonderful augury for philanthropy in India by individual. BHARTI FOUNDATION is philanthropic arm of Bharti Enterprises was established in 2000 with a vision “To help underprivileged children and young people of our country realize their potential”. After spending more than 30 years with ICICI Bank, Kalpana Morparia moved to JP Morgan India around two years back.

Naveen Jindal
Member of Parliament and EVC & MD of Jindal Steel and Power Ltd
Month: July 2010
Charity Wealth : Rs. 50 Lakh
Area : Education

Naveen Jindal, famous Industrialist turned Congress MP has donated his monthly salary accumulated over the past 5 years for the educational uplift of Kurukshetra (Haryana) his constituency.His consolidated salary from 2004 to 2009 amounts to nearly Rs 40 lakh. An additional amount of Rs 10 lakh from his personal income would also be added to the amount for this purpose.

The money will be used to buy notebooks for children of primary classes. These children are studying in 1.4 lakh government primary schools spread in nine assembly segments of Kurukshetra. The donation is a small step towards making Haryana number one state in terms of education in the country.

Naveen Jindal, Executive Vice -Chairman and Managing Director of Jindal Steel and Power Ltd represents  Kurukshetra Constituency in the Lok Sabha, since 2004.

Ratan Tata
Group Chairman of Tata Group
Month : October 2010
Charity Wealth : Rs. 220 crore ( USD 50 million )
Area : Education

Tata Sons’ Chairman, Ratan Tata, has donated $50 million (Rs 220 crore) to  Harvard Business School from the Dorabji Tata Trust and the Tata Education and Development Trust, philanthropic entities of Tata Group. This is the largest gift the school has received from an international donor in its 102-year history. The funds will be used to build a new academic and residential buildings on the school’s campus in Boston.

Ratan Tata, chairman of Tata Sons Ltd since 1991, attended the school’s advanced management programme – one of three leadership programmes offered by the school’s executive education programme-in 1975 and received its highest honour, the Alumni Achievement Award.

Tata is one of India’s largest business houses. After taking over as chairman in 1991, Ratan Tata revamped the operations of Tata Steel and made it one of the lowest-cost producers in the world. He also launched India’s first indigenous car, Indica, which turned around Tata Motors’ fortunes. The group recently produced Tata Nano, hailed as the world’s cheapest car. Well-known international brand names like Jaguar and Land Rover have also been bought up.

Shiv Nadar
Founder and Chairman of HCL Technologies
Month : June 2010
Charity Wealth :Rs. 580 crore
Area : Education

Founder of software firm HCL Technologies Shiv Nadar’s has donated over Rs. 580 crores  earned through the sale his 2.5 per cent stake in the company, owned by him and his family. This is to be used for  charitable work in education sector. The fund will be spent by Shiv Nadar Foundation.

Nadar’s personal wealth, based only on his shareholding in listed companies, including HCL Technologies and HCL Infosystems, is pegged at about Rs 15,000 crore. In the next five years, his philanthropic educational projects will entail an expenditure of Rs 4,000 crore. He sold a 2.5% equity in HCL Technologies this June 2010 and pumped the entire Rs 585 crore proceeds into his philanthropic efforts.

The 65-year-old chairman of HCL Technologies and co-founder of the HCL group, now spends about 40% of his time on social ventures. His daughter Roshni, is a social entrepreneurship

Fifteen years ago, Mr Nadar started his education venture via SSN College of Engineering, named after his father, and followed this up with three more SSN institutions – SSN School of Management & Computer Applications, SSN School of Advanced Software engineering in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University, US, and SSN research centre. Now, the focus is on completely free residential schools, a proposed Shiv Nadar University, and a Museum of Art named after Mr Nadar’s wife.

Shiv Nadar is also establishing a world-class university in western Uttar Pradesh with an  investment of around rupees 600 crore. To come up on a sprawling campus of 270 acre in Greater Noida, near Dadri, the proposed Shiv Nadar University has received an in-principle approval from the Uttar Pradesh government to start the academic session for its school of technology from July 2011. This will be followed by schools of education, food technology and management over a period of time.

Vineet Nayyar
Managing Director of Tech Mahindra
Month : March 2010
Charity Wealth : Rs. 30 crore
Area : Education

IT services firm Tech Mahindra Managing Director Vineet Nayyar has donated a third of his shares in the company, converted from employee stock option plan (ESOP, worth over Rs. 30 crore, to a Delhi-based charitable organization, the Essel Social Welfare Foundation, run by his wife. Vineet is also the Vice Chairman, Managing Director & CEO of Tech Mahindra and the Chairman of Mahindra Satyam.

Essel Social Welfare Foundation, an umbrella organization to many other NGOs, supports education of underprivileged children, including the girl child and the visually handicapped. It is run by Reva Nayyar, a retired bureaucrat who has in the recent past been involved with ministry of woman and child development and has been instrumental in enactment of policies and legislation pertaining to women and child welfare.

Vineet Nayyar has been associated with the organization for the past few years. This donation is on of the largest even by the standards set by bigger companies in the country.

Vineet Nayar
CEO & Vice chairman of HCL Technologies
Charity Wealth: Rs. 43 crore
Area : Education

HCL Technologies CEO Vineet Nayar turn, who has divested a part of his stake this week in the company for charity purposes. HCL Technologies vice chairman, and director Vineet Nayar sold a million shares in HCL Technologies worth Rs 43 crore, in a bid to raise money for his charity SAMPARK, which works towards children’s education in India.

In 2004, he started a non-profit called Sampark which has an aim to create a million smiles. SAMPARK, run as a personal non-profit venture by Mr Nayar, has generally kept a low profile. Mr Nayar joined HCL in 1985 as a trainee after his MBA from XLRI. Mr Nayar, 47, is now one of the highest paid CEOs in India with a salary of over Rs 4.5 crore per year.

The charity is working with ill equipped schools in India to improve the quality of education through Teach the Teacher program. It is also investing in basic infrastructure and creating science labs in schools. SAMPARK also funds engineering education for students from these schools by providing scholarship to meritorious students.

(The report is based on media reports and company statements. Name in the alphabetical order)

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