New Delhi– Government’s push for a clean Ganga has not cut ice with the Indian corporate sector as only Rs 2.11 crore has been spent as CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) expenditure in the FY 2017-18 (Apr-Mar).
The total CSR expenditure during this period was over Rs 8,365 crore.
The figures were given by Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitharaman in Lok Sabha on Monday (15 Jul). The figures were available up to the 20 Oct, by which period 3,117 companies eligible for mandatory CSR had filed their spending with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA), the minister said.
As per the Companies Act, 2013, CPSEs under Ministry of Steel earmark at least 2% of the average net profits made during the three preceding financial years for CSR activities. The unspent balance for the previous year, if any, is carried forward to the next year for utilisation for the purpose for which it was allocated.
In FY17, the Indian corporate sector had spent Rs 24.37 crore as CSR on Clean Ganga initiative out of the total Rs 14,242 crore spend by 21,470 companies on other CSR initiatives.
However, the government has launched several projects on the pollution abatement, conservation and rejuvenation on Ganga. Under the Namami Gange Programme by the Centre launched in 2014, a budget outlay of Rs 20,000 crore has been allotted to clean the river. It also created a clean Ganga find to sensitise people and encourage public and private participation.