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Csr - Need of the Hour

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CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY (CSR) – THE NEED OF THE HOUR

What is CSR?

“No success or achievement in material terms is worthwhile unless it serves the needs or interests of the country and its people “

- Late Shri. J.R.D. Tata

As evident from the above definition, the basic objective underlying CSR is maximization of societal benefits from business.

The concept of CSR has been evolving since the early seventies, and yet there does not seem to be a uniform definition. It is perhaps not surprising that the CSR that exists now has many different definitions. In the Indian context, CSR would extend to issues as complex as regional development, rural development, employment, education and healthcare services, while CSR in the context of developing countries (and to some extent developed countries as well) broadly relates to issues of governance, business ethics, human rights and environment. CSR activities have their own advantages. The benefits are in terms of building a positive image, encouraging social involvement of employees, which in turn develops a sense of loyalty for the organization.

A survey recently conducted by a reputed NGO revealed that the factors most influencing public impression of companies were social responsibility; brand reputation and sound business fundamentals. This goes to show the importance of CSR in an organizational context. Factually speaking, CSR activities in most organizations are much more than a brand-building effort. Dedicated departments in most organizations are looking into much more than just funding or getting involved in one-time projects.

CSR has rapidly grown in the last few years, though the principles of the concept have long been a part of enlightened business strategy. Many companies now support and organize specific themes, often in conjunction with reputed NGOs, with...

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