A responsible business is a successful business: Meher Pudumjee

© Provided by The Indian Express

We thought that before we point a finger elsewhere, why don’t we, as corporates, do something concrete. We have made a modest beginning by partnering with the NGO Dasra.

We joined hands with other like-minded corporates across Mumbai, Pune and Ahmedabad.

Dasra brought together various partners and in a rare setting, corporates are working with the likes of Aajeevika Bureau and Centre for Social Justice, NGOs who have provided services and support to vulnerable workers for decades to find innovative solutions for informal workers engaged with industry.

We have commenced an initiative and called it Social Compact or SoCo to ensure greater dignity and equity for industry-employed informal workers in India, and mainstream the aspiration that a responsible business is equal to a successful business.

We kick-started this SoCo initiative in September last year by identifying six outcome areas that underpin the vulnerability of industry-engaged informal workers, including living wages for all, safety at the workplace and sites, health and social security cover, grievance redressal mechanism, gender parity in women’s work and compensation, linkages of all with entitlements like Aadhaar card, medical insurance, PF, PSIC. SoCo also resolves to enable workers through upskilling and growth opportunities.

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The compact can only be successful if more organisations adopt it and we have more champions like Pradeep Bhargava in Pune or dedicated people like Farhad Forbes, who are trying to mainstream the aspiration among businesses in partnership with industry bodies like CII and Family Business Network. Leaders like Mitali Nag are helping the SoCo vision reach the CII youth wing, which is YI, influencing those who can redefine the future of business for India.

Extract from Pudumjee’s address

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