Interlinking of rivers, or the fallacy of development agendas
Take a cursory look at the numbers: 3,000 storage structures, a canal network stretching almost 15,000 km and transferring 174 billion litres of water a year, 34 GW of hydroelectric power generated, 87 million acres of land irrigated, and over 500,000 people facing displacement. No surprises for guessing that most of those people will be the already poo
The Disunited State of CSR in India
Even before the CSR mandate came into effect, plenty of critics pointed out the potential pitfalls as well as the lack of clarity in the drafting of this law. For example, the mechanism for enforcing this law is quite vague and not spelled out clearly. Companies can even sidestep this requirement by providing ‘valid’ explanations.
Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and the idea of sanitation
Okay, the government has promised a Clean India by 2019. And it has asked corporate groups to pitch in. It’s not a random mandate, by the way. Contributing to Swachh Bharat Abhiyan qualifies as legitimate corporate social responsibility (CSR) spend as per the country’s famous CSR law (Section 135 of Companies Act, 2013).
The STAIRS way to heaven, or something like it
Sports in India is a bit like politics. Everyone has an opinion on it but that’s about it. We all know that one colleague who can rattle off every possible statistic on Tendulkar, the friend who can convincingly argue that Messi’s right foot is better than his left, the stranger who chides you for not remembering the last time the Indian hockey team
A tale of two tea gardens
What they found may be no news for most of us but was shocking to them – desperate poverty, malnourished workers, underage children striving to become a malnourished worker, faulty equipment exposing them to hazardous chemicals, houses resembling hovels at best, and of course toilets that wouldn’t work.
Volkswagen – how to not get away with cheating
On 18 September, VW admitted to US authorities that it cheated about the emissions of half a million diesel cars sold there. By the 22nd, this had snowballed into 11 million cars worldwide. The short version of this story is...
CSR leaders and non-profits form Silver Circle
Going beyond seminars and forums, in a not-quite-formal environment, sitting across a common table, Silver Circle patrons discussed at length a couple of subjects that otherwise do not get much attention and generally do not see a resolution. They had gathered for a morning of intense discussions at Jindal Centre in New Delhi, on 8 May 2015.
Green Signals from Jairam Ramesh – ‘go’, ‘no go’, and making sense of the in-betweens
Ramesh's decisions as a minister had pitted him against country’s large business houses as well as his ministerial colleagues for his assertive stand on environment protection. In this informal conversation, he reasons why environmental concerns have to be embedded into the growth process, laments industry’s mindset, calls current government’s at