If you are a CSR professional in India and struggle to reconcile how lousy business practices are covered up with huge charitable CSR spending- keep calm- National Guidelines for Responsible Business Conduct 2018 is here.
With a foreword from Honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi himself, NGRBC 2018, launched by Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India, finally brings business responsibility centre stage – different and distinct from charity and philanthropy which till now are the mainstay of The Companies Act 2013 section 135.
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi quotes, “Responsible Business Conduct is a globally recognized concept founded on the idea that businesses can perform better when engaged in re-vitalizing the society from which they extract resources for production.
The National Guidelines on Responsible Business Conduct, 2018 (NGRBC), which is an improvement over the existing National Voluntary Guidelines on Social, Environmental & Economic Responsibilities of Business, 2011 (NVGs), are a means of nudging businesses to contribute towards wider development goals while seeking to maximize their profits.
The NGRBC is dovetailed with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business & Human Rights (UNGPs). The NGRBC intends the responsibility companies more responsible and accountable but also to create a whole ecosystem to ‘Protect, ‘Respect & ‘Remedy’ as envisaged in the UNGPs.
NGRBC is articulated as a set of nine principles and their attendant core elements and is aligned to international standards like Sustainable Development Goals and yet remain true and specific to the Indian context.
The NGRBC document refers the Gandhian philosophy of trusteeship and demonstrates maturity by referring to the responsibility of the business towards the society- it also brings in the concept of the responsible value-chain, – to encourage and support their suppliers, vendors, distributors, partners value-chain and other stakeholders to follow the same principle.