Pharma Firms To Get CSR Credit If They Donate Meds: HC told

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New Delhi: The Centre today informed the Delhi High Court that pharma companies will get benefit under corporate social responsibility ules if they donate medicines to poor patients who are afflicted by life threatening or other diseases and can’t afford expensive treatment.

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) made the submission before Justice Manmohan who had earlier questioned whether pharmaceutical firms will get CSR credit if they donate medicines as the rules say that work done by corporates in their ‘normal course of business’ will not entail this benefit.

Pharma FirmsHowever, today, advocate Maneesha Dhir, appearing for the ministry, said that pharma companies will get benefit of CSR if they donate medicines.

The court asked the ministry to make this clarification official by way of inserting an explanatory note in the CSR rules regarding this aspect.

The ministry also submitted that it has decided to amend the entries in the CSR policy to the extent that ‘promoting preventive health care’ will be modified to ‘promoting health care including preventive health care’.

“This would encompass the entire health care area, inclduing the treatment of diseases, etc,” the ministry said.

The court was hearing final arguments in two petitions, one seeking treatment for a rickshawpuller’s minor son who is suffering from Gaucher, a degenerative genetic disorder, and another by a haemophiliac who is pleading to be treated at state expense as his family has run out of money.

Meanwhile, the court directed the Centre and Delhi government to explore the possibility of releasing money from various relief funds including that of the Prime Minister and the Lt Governor for treatment of the bed-ridden haemophiliac man.

[Press Trust of India]

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