2% CSR norm is good, increase in this will impact businesses, feels Adi Godrej

MUMBAI: In his recent interview with Free Press Journal, Adi Godrej, Chairman of Godrej Group is not in the favor of increasing the percentage of spending on Corporate Social Responsibility programmes.

Godrej says, “This percentage should not rise too much. Otherwise it will impact businesses. Big advantage of corporates are that they invest in new projects and employ new people. CSR activities should not affect that.”

“I believe that two per cent is a good sum. We should encourage people to make better profits. So, that they can invest more on CSR and have good environment in the country. This will support growth that will allow increase in people’s income.”, he added.

When asked “Will there be a decline in these donations and their expertise with Indian’s acquiring more wealth?”. He said No, I don’t think that will happen. International philanthropists are interested in developing countries. I think that flow will continue in the country. But I would like to add that we are underestimating the philanthropy that is taking place in India especially with CSR coming in place.

“There is quite a few philanthropic activity that is taking place especially among the young entrepreneurs— likes of Infosys. They have put in so much money in philanthropic causes. Young people who are doing well are putting in lot of money. I think philanthropy in our country will see a rise.”, he further added.

When asked, “Is individual level philanthropy better than the government enforced one?”, he said, “I think it is better. But to make the country stronger, there should be more self-employment. There are many people who are starting their own businesses and they should be encouraged.”

Godraj further said that apart from skilling, India as a country should also concentrate on education.

“We cannot afford to have illiterate person. We should make sure every young person should be literate but of course, not everyone is capable of absorbing but they should go to school. And from that those who are intelligent should be given an opportunity to study more. India has to create more and more opportunities for practical education.”, he said.

He says, “I believe the budget should be growth-oriented and employment-oriented. There are a lot of opportunities.”

(Inputs from Free Press Journal)