Industry

Coronavirus | Govt. urges India Inc to help scale up COVID facilities

Preparation under way by DRDO to set up a hospital with 500 beds equipped with ICU facilities for CVOID-19 patients near the airport in New Delhi.   | Photo Credit: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Urging Corporate India to help the government battle the second wave of COVID-19, the government on Thursday asked them to consider setting up temporary COVID-care facilities and makeshift hospitals to treat the rising number of cases needing medical care.

Businesses may even consider using their vacant office premises or buildings for such facilities, since most employees are working from home, Corporate Affairs Secretary Rajesh Verma said in an appeal which also stressed that businesses are allowed to spend their mandatory corporate social responsibility (CSR) funds on setting up makeshift hospitals and temporary COVID care facilities.

Citing the example of temporary COVID care facilities set up by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)in the capital, Mr. Verma said companies can do the same in tandem with States.

“You may like to consider converting vacant office buildings to temporary COVID care facilities with either isolation beds or a combination of isolation and oxygen beds to cater to rapidly increasing COVID caseload in many parts of the country, some of which may lie in your vicinity,” the secretary wrote.

“Your prompt and targeted efforts will certainly help in providing the much-needed relief to the citizens during this difficult time. I am quite hopeful that with our resolve to work together we would be able to tackle this unprecedented crisis in an efficient manner,” Mr. Verma concluded in his appeal to industry leaders.

Last March, the ministry had said that spending CSR funds for COVID-19 related work was permitted under the law that mandates all companies with a net worth of ₹500 crore or more, a turnover of ₹1,000 crore or more, or net profit of ₹5 crore or more, to spend 2% of their average profits of the previous three years on CSR activities annually.

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Printable version | May 6, 2021 9:05:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/Industry/coronavirus-govt-urges-india-inc-to-help-scale-up-covid-facilities/article34387064.ece

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