Anil Agarwal, Chairman, Vedanta Group, tweeted, ‘Today on International day for #PovertyEradication let’s rededicate ourselves towards causes for a poverty free India. #EndPoverty’
Amidst the World Bank’s Global Monitoring Report 2014-15 on the Millennium Development Goals, the Group Chairman of Vedanta Resources Plc, Mr. Anil Agarwal today reaffirmed his commitment via a tweet to eliminate poverty in India.
Over the years, Vedanta has been at the forefront with initiatives targeted towards community development across areas like healthcare, education, livelihood, women’s empowerment and environmental protection. The initiatives have benefitted over 4.1 million people globally and have ensured development of the communities in locations of the company’s operations.
According to the report, India has been the biggest contributor to poverty reduction between 2008 and 2011, with around 140 million lifted out of absolute poverty.
While appreciating efforts of the government, NGOs and the corporates’ efforts in reducing poverty in the country, Mr. Agarwal stressed on further efforts that are required to completely eradicate extreme poverty and achieve the other primary goals as identified in UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
According to the report, in 2010, one-third of the world’s 1.2 billion extreme poor lived in India alone. Off the eight primary goals identified in MDGs, the company has aligned and introduced programs not just in and around the key areas but beyond.
Amongst the many initiatives, Vedanta established a Gurukul Public School at Rajasthan to achieve universal primary education and separately launched a Post-Graduate Girls College to promote gender equality and empower women. Additionally, Self Help Groups were set up in Chattisgarh and Tamil Nadu to encourage skills and business inventions of rural women. Under Projects like Sakhi and Unnati, women are trained in tailoring, mehendi designs and agricultural and farming programmes.
Initiatives like Project Shrishti were undertaken to promote bio-diversity and ensure environmental sustainability. Project Khushi was initiated towards the care for underprivileged children, managing their education, nutrition and health, which are essential for early child development, combat diseases and help reduce child mortality.
Furthermore, Ek Pehal: an adolescent health and education program was launched in Punjab spreading awareness on wellbeing. Similarity, Jeevan Amrit project was initiated in Rajasthan to provide access to clean, safe drinking water. To address the issue of open defecation, a rural sanitation project was launched and toilets were built in Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan.
Vedanta’s philanthropic arm, the Vedanta Foundation was set up in 1992, with the deep-seated belief that companies have a responsibility to contribute substantially to the welfare of the community that has allowed them to grow and prosper.