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Ranbaxy has voluntarily suspended all API shipments from its Toansa and Dewas. This follows suspension of API shipments from its Toansa plant by the US FDA
Pharma company Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd said it is examining the 'processes and controls' at all its active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) manufacturing and quality units, which has led to temporarily putting on hold shipments from its API facilities of Toansa and Dewas plants.
The announcement comes a month after Ranbaxy had said that the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) had notified the company prohibiting it from manufacturing and distributing APIs from its facility in Toansa for FDA-regulated drug products.
In a regulatory filing, Ranbaxy said its decision to examine the processes and controls at all its API manufacturing and quality units was taken as a precautionary measure and out of abundant caution to better allow it to assess and review the processes and controls. The company said it would resume shipments after reassuring them about the processes and controls at these facilities.
A committee of the board has been formed this month as Quality & Integrity Committee to help ensure good governance to all Ranbaxy stakeholders. The principal role of this committee was to offer oversight on its manufacturing and quality operations, systems, organisation and integrity, the pharma company said.
In late January, the company said that the FDA barred Ranbaxy from manufacturing and distributing APIs from its facility in Toansa for FDA-regulated drug products. The Toansa facility was subject to certain terms of a consent decree of permanent injunction entered against Ranbaxy in January 2012.
With corporates mandated to spend 2% of their net profit on CSR initiatives, can we expand use this into areas like foodgrain storage, adopting complete villages, helping railways in improving infrastructure etc., where it can make a huge impact?
Thanks to the initiative taken by some corporate giants in the past, and the leadership qualities shown by them, in the form of setting up educational institutions, hospitals and other forms of charitable activities, including housing colonies for staff, this social responsibility has taken deep roots in the country for decades. Charity has been in the Indian blood since time immemorial. The house of Tatas, Birlas and many others have been practising this social responsibility for decades now. It is growing by the day.
As per the new Companies Act, both mid and large companies will have to spend 2% of their three year annual average net profit on corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities. The government expects the corporate giants to take a significant step forward in spending part of their profits in CSR designated areas.
CSR activities have been broadly covered to include such responsible areas as education; gender equality; environment; national heritage; prime minister's relief fund; all expenses related to the benefit of armed forces veterans, war widows and their dependents. Establishment of educational institutions, which may include polytechnics and hostels for students will help strengthen our educational base further.
Particular reference and emphasis has also been indicated for empowering women, in setting up homes and hostels, age old homes, day care centres and other similar centres for the senior citizens are also envisaged.
It is believed that spending on training to promote rural and nationally recognised para Olympics and Olympic sports would also qualify for credit under the CSR rules.
Rural development projects, technology incubators and parks, which are located within the academic institutions and approved by the government may also qualify to be accounted for in the CSR obligations.
Similarly, national heritage sites, including those that require restoration will also be covered by CSR. In fact, the scope for doing such "public seva" is truly unlimited!
As this process will surely take time to be brought into operation, are there other areas that we can come up with for government to consider seriously to include under CSR? Yes, there are a few that comes to our mind, and many more that can be suggested by our readers of Moneylife. Some of these are:
a) let corporate chieftains choose (their shareholders, if you like) to build standardised foodgrains warehouses/ godowns in locations that need them, to be identified by the government;
b) let the corporations who build these warehouses/ godowns be given land on permanent lease either free or on nominal rent
c) let it be the corporate responsibility to ensure related main road or feeder roads to and from the warehouses
d) let the corporate houses select towns and villages where they should be given free land to build schools, hospitals and polytechnics
e) let the corporate houses be given land so that they can build housing colonies for their staff/ workers, including retirement homes with full service facilities
f) let the manufacturers of electrical appliances, right from simple electricity bulbs and fans, to invest in areas for power generation and distribution
g) let the corporate houses be allowed to build indoor and outdoor sports stadiums in towns/cities - to be identified by Sports Ministry- for development of sports
h) let corporate houses be given the opportunity to help the railways in laying tracks, building and improving existing stations, including expansion of available facilities for the travellers.
i) let corporate houses be actively associated in building irrigational canals and wind power and solar farms to generate more power to people.
All these and more will help CSR become a reality.
(AK Ramdas has worked with the Engineering Export Promotion Council of the ministry of commerce. He was also associated with various committees of the Council. His international career took him to places like Beirut, Kuwait and Dubai at a time when these were small trading outposts; and later to the US.)