Indian Institute of Technology Madras is actively collaborating with the Industry and Corporate firms towards becoming the core for Technology-Driven CSR Activities in the country. In recent years, the Institute has raised around Rs. 200 Crore for CSR projects from more than 140 leading Corporates, implementing high-quality, technology-driven CSR projects pan-India.
Working towards the goal of making technology drive CSR activities, IIT Madras organized a roundtable meet titled ‘Explore and Grow—CSR Partnerships’ in Mumbai on 16th December 2021. The event focused on the emerging trend within India’s CSR – the use of technology to drive change on the ground. The evening witnessed the active participation of Corporate Leaders from various industries.
Hosting Corporate Decision Makers and CSR Heads, the session included panel discussions by renowned expert faculty from IIT Madras on socially-relevant projects that have come from the Institute Research. The panels explored pressing issues such as affordable healthcare, sustainable urban infrastructure development, algorithms to solve real-world problems and revolutionizing the edu-skilling space, also touching on astonishing solutions to these problems that technology uniquely holds.
Addressing the industry leaders, Prof. Mahesh Panchagnula, Dean (Corporate and Alumni Affairs), IIT Madras, shared, “IIT Madras is excited to partner with Corporate India on this exciting journey of creating Indian-origin solutions to the world’s problems. We are very proud of our students and our alumni who are vested in developing technologies that will transform tomorrow’s India. IIT Madras is solving tomorrow’s problems.”
Further, Prof. Mahesh Panchagnula said, “India has committed to reaching certain SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). CSR is best positioned for solving tomorrow’s problems and meeting tomorrow’s needs. Do come and partner with us and help transform our ideas and solutions into reality.”
All donations made to IIT Madras are 100 per cent tax deductible u/s 80(G) Indian Income Tax Act, with no limit. As per Section VII of Companies Act, 2013, Contributions made to IIT Madras are considered as CSR Expenditure.
Further, Ms. Rema Mohan, Chief Executive Officer, NSE Foundation, said, “CSR plays a catalytic role in ensuring socially-relevant low-cost solutions are created and scaled. The NSE Foundation has taken pressing problems such as air pollution and septic tank cleaning through mechanised solutions and worked closely with IIT Madras to create scalable solutions. Today’s IIT Madras CSR Connect was an eye opener and truly informative on the breadth of work undertaken by the Institute.”
The Office of Institutional Advancement (OIA) at IIT Madras actively manages the IIT Madras Alumni donations, transforming them into endowments, support for new state-of-the-art infrastructure and scholarship support for needy, deserving students. The OIA has been engaged in working with alumni and corporates on various CSR projects and other philanthropic initiatives with a focus on creating transformative social impact.
Speaking about the response from the corporate world to IIT Madras Projects, Mr. Kaviraj Nair, Chief Executive Officer, OIA, IIT Madras, said, “It is very encouraging to note that these days, several companies are taking a long-term view on CSR projects. Many of firms are interested in funding upstream research for social development projects as part of their CSR initiatives, which results in outcomes that are socially relevant and transformational.”
Mr. Nachiket Deshpande, Chief Operating Officer, Larsen & Toubro Infotech (LTI), added, “Our focus is to leverage this technology to connect people from remote parts of India in a better way.”
Highlighting their collaboration with IIT Madras, Ms. Usha Vandavasi, Director-Finance & CFO, Portescap India Private Limited, said, “Portescap India and IIT Madras have partnered for CSR initiatives in the healthcare field – AREBO (Arm Rehabilitation Robot) and ‘Sit to Stand’ Mobility Projects. We are impressed with the progress in both. As a company, our core Values are to deliver exceptional value to communities and society and drive innovative solutions to save, improve and enhance lives. Our partnership with IIT Madras mirrors our core values and we look forward to further such initiatives which bring our Corporate and CSR philosophy to life.”