President Pratibha Patil asks India Inc. to set up entrepreneurship fund


{?} The first ever ‘India Corporate Week’ concludes with the honouring of the stalwarts of the Corporate Sector by the President of India {?} Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil calls upon industry leaders to actively look at the synergies between industry and agriculture {?} Shri Salman Khurshid releases voluntary guidelines for corporate governance and corporate responsibility

President Pratibha Patil today asked India Inc. to set up a dedicated fund to promote entrepreneurship among farmers and participate earnestly in rural development.

“...Corporates Houses can consider setting up a dedicated fund for entrepreneurship development and capacity building among farmers and involve NGOs in these efforts,” she said, giving away the National Corporate Awards. The first ever ‘India Corporate Week’ (14 December-21December) concluded here today with the President of India, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, exhorting the leaders of Industry to explore the many complementarities that exist between rural enterprises and the corporate world. Addressing the concluding function of the ‘India Corporate Week 2009’ at Vigyan Bhawan the President said, “Industry must explore the many complementarities that exist between rural enterprises and the corporate world. This needs to be undertaken in a farmer friendly approach that takes into account sensitivities of the farmers and keeps their interests in the forefront.” Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil said that some Indian companies have understood that linking farmers to processing industries would be beneficial to both. They have developed interesting models of engagement with the farming community, the President said. “We can draw lessons from these experiences, as we look at options of harnessing the potential of village economies. It is farmer centric and farmer supported systems of production and marketing, that will make for durable arrangements. Farmers will need to be convinced that they can be owners of the means of production, as well as partners in production and marketing methods, in a way that would benefit them. It is this trust that will trigger a chain of action for innovative production architecture”, the President said. Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil expressed confidence that, “Corporate India would enthusiastically come forward to take up this challenging task. I conclude by expressing my appreciation for the dialogue initiated between the Ministry of Corporate Affairs and the Corporate Sector on issues that are of concern, in order to bring the focus on ensuring that corporate growth is inclusive. India’s standing as a rising economic power is closely linked with how we can create opportunities for all. A path that excludes millions of Indians from prosperity, is simply not acceptable. India as the world’s largest democracy attracts a lot of attention. The Corporate Sector as it extends its operations around the globe, must also play an active role in the nation’s socio-economic development, including agriculture.”

Indian enterprises and businesses have not only provided an outlet to the creative and entrepreneurial talent in the country, but have also brought global recognition to the country. The acumen and talent of Indian businesspersons is being recognized across the world. A growing number of Indians are leading transnational companies. At the same time, many Indian companies have become global. These achievements make us proud.

India was able to maintain a healthy growth rate even in the face of an unfavourable economic situation prevailing in the world in the last few years. Our capacity to ward off, to a large extent, the adverse impacts of the global financial crisis, were due to the timely stimulus measures taken by the Government, our well regulated financial markets, as well as our strong domestic demand. Our large and robust market is a strong attraction for businesses across the world. This extensive internal market also gives our companies a great advantage, which they must fully utilize.

The theme of ‘India Corporate Week 2009’ was: Corporate Sector and Inclusive Growth. For it the Ministry had joined hands with various business chambers and the three professional institutes – CII, FICCI, ASSOCHAM, PHD Chambers, Bombay Chambers, ICSI, ICAI, ICWAI, IICA and NFCG for reaching out to the stakeholders including the general public to showcase the contribution of corporate sector.

Shri Salman Khurshid, Minister of Corporate Affairs, presided over the function. He acknowledged the corporate growth and its contribution in taking the benefits of developments to a larger section of the society. While enumerating the initiatives of the Ministry in providing an enabling environment to the corporate sector to flourish, Shri Khurshid underlined the various developmental challenges which need to be addressed while celebrating the corporate growth. He emphasized the need for collaborative solution in which the Government, the business sector, the civil society organizations and the common citizens need to partner. Shri Salman Khurshid also released a compendium on ‘Corporate Sector 2009’ and voluntary guidelines on Corporate Governance and Corporate Social Responsibility. He urged the corporate sector to adopt these guidelines which would facilitate the process of value generation flowing to a larger section of society.

The Secretary of Corporate Affairs Ministry, Shri R. Bandyopadhyay, in his welcome address expressed gratitude to the President of India for sparing her valuable time to grace the occasion. He stated that India Corporate Week was organized in a period of only 37 days and this became possible with the support and enthusiasm of the partner organizations. Briefly discussing the initiatives of the Ministry in e-governance, investor protection and enlightened regulations, Shri Bandyopadhyay stated that the Ministry endeavors to work in a consultative mode and takes into account the views and suggestions from all stakeholders in the implementation of its various initiatives.

The President of ASSOCHAM, Dr. Swati Piramal; President of FICCI, Shri Harsh Pati Singhania; and President – Designate of CII, Shri Hari Bhartia also addressed the function. The President of India, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, honoured the stalwart institutions and institutes related to the Indian corporate sectors: FICCI, CII, ASSOCHAM, ICAI, ICWAI, ICSI and Shri C. Rangrajan by presenting them with trophies in recognition of their excellence.


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