Law and order in a time of lynch mobs Livemint, 23 Aug. Acts of violence are being perpetrated almost weekly by self-appointed upholders of public morality. The victims are Muslims, leftists, rationalists, and Dalits. In the wake of concerted national and international opprobrium, the Union home minister has finally taken notice.
CSR, tax laws not favourable for international aid Indian companies are mostly extending aid in Nepal by leveraging their own businesses as a goodwill gesture Indian companies, led by ITC Ltd, Bharti Airtel Ltd and SpiceJet Ltd, have rushed to the aid of earthquake-ravaged Nepal, and many more are looking for ways to provide help.
For now, Indian companies can mostly extend aid by leveraging their own businesses or services as a goodwill gesture.
Airtel offered free calls on its network from India to Nepal for 48 hours from Saturday. SpiceJet said it is offering free flights from Kathmandu to India to people who cannot afford to pay the full fare. In addition, it is helping non-governmental organizations NGOs and relief organizations to travel to Nepal in a flight that has been put together for relief measures.
Noshir Dadrawala, chief executive of the Mumbai-based Centre for Advancement of Philanthropy, a not-for-profit working in the area of corporate social initiatives, said companies will not be able to tap their corporate social responsibility CSR funds for international aid, as government rules require that these funds be spent on CSR activities in India.
While companies are routing their relief material through government agencies such as NDRM or through the ministry for external affairs, which in turn sends the material with the Indian Air Force, Indian-registered NGOs may not find it easy to engage in relief operations in Nepal, even when they have the expertise.
Goonj, an NGO that works in disaster relief, has found its work hampered by these rules, and has been unable to send immediate relief material even though it is ready.
We have two truckloads of material—medicines, blankets, tents—ready to be deployed. They are aiming to raise about Rs.
The kits contain essential items such as tarpaulin for making tents, water, hygiene kits, etc. Dadrawala said cross-border laws are complicated when it comes to providing aid, and suggested the rules be relaxed in major disasters like the Nepal quake in order to allow aid to flow freely.
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