Corporates addressing Social Concerns

28 09 2007

Reliance Industries now wants to enter into HealthCare working on developing 1500 Primary HealthCare Centers (PHC) in-line with the Government Health System in India.

Reliance would want to Invest Rs.25,000 Crores into this venture. In the article, there is a questions which has been put across whether this would fit into the Corporate responsibility or is there a business angle to it?

I feel that there is corporate touch to each aspect of service anywhere in this world. Probably, the NGO segment does not fall into this, but even NGO’s work towards creating a model for self-sustainence and longitivity of the organization. So, will this work?

My opnion is that these kind of initiatives will definitely work, and especially, when corporates this big would want to venture into social problem related areas, there would be a huge impact on people. However, corporates venturing into Social problems need to have a different strategy while working on solutions. Traditionally, corporate thinking is different from a common man’s thought process. Here are few pro’s and con’s of corporate involvement in social aspects:


  1. Initiatives are well marketed – People know about big organization and tend to look at what they are trying to do and play a role in it.
  2. Financial Strength – Organizations have good money and they are ready to take the risk of investing and taking risks.
  3. Management ability – Experienced people have good understanding of basic problems and hence they can manage solutions effectively.

Need Attention

  1. Organizations need to involve well-known and respected personalities who have worked/have been working in solving social problems. Having respective background knowledge would be a huge advantage.
  2. Corporates should not give/create their own direction to solutions of these problems, instead work in association with Government and people who are experienced in the respective fields.

This is a good change in thinking of corporates, I hope this goes in a good and meaningful direction.

Drive to Vizag

17 09 2007

I have been to Vizag earlier on my Scorpio. This is the second time, but still wanted to write a few lines of my memoirs of this drive (I am still in Vizag and will go back during the weekend).
I left Bangalore on 14 September morning at around 5:25 AM. It was raining heavily throughout the night and was also raining when I left home. I thought that the rain might stop after I cover some distance, but unfortunately it continued for a long time 😦

The Drive
Left home at 5:25 AM and as it was raining heavily, I was driving at around 60-70KMPH speed on the outer ring road. I was just hoping to leave the city limits (Haskote) before it is daylight so that I can avoid some traffic. I drove till 6:30 AM, crossing Haskote and was nearing Kolar. There were no signs of the rain stopping. The rain continued until I reached A1, Reliance Counter 20 KM before Chittore. Took around 3 hours to reach instead of my regular 2.5 Hours for a distance of 175 KM at that time of the day. Had breakfast, re-fueled and started driving by around 8:45 AM. Luckily, there was no signs of rain, but the road was damp which clearly indicates that there was rain during the previous night.

Continued my drive with a small break near Naidupeta for Tea. Stopped near Ongol for a quick lunch. Had biscutes and some juice to get my energy going and continue with the drive.

I reached Guntur around 2:30 PM and was on-time to cross Vijayawada at around 3:30 PM. While I was crossing Guntur, there was a heavy downpour and my speed came down with traffic adding to the rain. Took a lot of time and crossed Vijayawada at around 5 PM. There was drizzling throughout from there and by the time I reached Rajamundry, it was 8:30 PM. I then decided to stay back and leave in the morning. Stayed back and started driving at 7 AM next morning and reached Vizag at 9:30 AM 🙂

I have pictures while I drove and also of Vizag at my Flickr account. Have a look….

HealthCare Personnel in India

7 09 2007

The number of registered Doctors in India has increased from 61,800 in 1951 to 6,45,825 in 2005, which translates to 0.61 Doctors for every 1000 people. To give a comparative analysis, Cuba has 5.91 Doctors for every 1000 people in 2002.
India has 5.9 Doctors, 0.8 Nurses and 0.47 Mid-Wives for 1,000 people which add up to 1.86 Health workers for 1,000 people. As per the Joint Learning Initiative launched by Rockefeller Foundation, on an average, countries with less than 2.5 Health Care workers fail to achieve 80% coverage rate. According to Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s (MOFHW) “Health Information India”, 2004, we had 67, 576 Doctors; which translates to 1 Doctor for 15, 980 people.
The Government’s estimated requirement of specialized surgeons, obstetricians, gynecologists, physicians and pediatricians in 2001 for Community Health Centers in rural areas is 12, 172, but only 6, 617 posts were sanctioned and only 4, 124 positions were filled.

  • There are 122 Private Medical Collages and 119 Government Medical Colleges in India.
  • As per CNN-IBN Lives article published on 30 August 2007, there is 1 Doctor for every 2,200 people.
  • According to an Escorts Heart Institute research document prepared in 2005, it is estimated that India would need 1,00,000 qualified nurses and 5,00,000 Doctors by 2012.
  • There are close to 8000 Hospitals in India with a total of 6,00,000 beds, which translates to only 7 beds for every 10,000 population.
  • India spends around 10% of its GDP (amount) towards HealthCare.

IT Department Blog

7 09 2007

I was pretty impressed with Income Tax Department, Government of India having a Blog and someone updating it regularly with few FAQ’s. See for yourself –

Online Grievances in India

2 09 2007

Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances which falls under the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions has initiated the Online Public Grievance Lodging and Monitoring System which you could use to record any of your grievances to the Government.

India is truly developing and these are small steps to reach there. So, next time when you have a concern, try this. You don’t know, it might just work.

Online Grievances in India

2 09 2007

Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances which falls under the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions has initiated the Online Public Grievance Lodging and Monitoring System which you could use to record any of your grievances to the Government.

India is truly developing and these are small steps to reach there. So, next time when you have a concern, try this. You don’t know, it might just work.

OCC Meet on 2 Sep 07

2 09 2007

Today, we had another meeting of OCC@Bangalore. Actually, during the first meet, they have decided to meet once in 15 days (I didn’t know this as I left early that day). So, going forward, OCC@Bangalore will be meeting alternative Sunday’s at a location discussed and agreed on the mailing list.
It was interesting as around 30+ enthusiastic people came together. It was good to see good number of repetitive participants which makes the discussion more interesting.
Today, we discussed on “Marketing your Start-up” and it was really great to see people sharing their ideas and views. Ranjit from Kapston started the discussion. His company (Kapston) works on helping entrepreneurs with On-line marketing and he shared few insights into what his organization does.
Sharman, who has ventured into starting various organizations and also closing few of them shared his experiences with Marketing and mentioning that many entrepreneurs fail to understand the customer and being flexible because they have a strong bonding with their idea. I do agree with him…our idea/thought might be very powerful and we might be obsessed with it, but towards the end of the day, we need to look at what the customer needs. If this calls for re-thinking our idea, we should.
Pratik of Muziboo, took this discussion more forward. Muziboo is for people who compose their own music and the site allows them to upload their work and see what the world thinks about it. Here are few points from his thoughts:

  • Muziboo does not have any set budget for Marketing.
  • Friends are main source of spreading the word.
  • Started marketing on Orkut.
  • Spending time with bloggers to get the word of their idea to spread.

A very different approach for marketing and in few ways makes sense too. He is clear that he would wait until they reach good number of registrations on the site to work on other aspects of marketing. Why wait? Because, this site is for amateur and professional musicians to upload their composition and hear what others have to say. For this kind of functioning, they would need serious musicians and Pratik feels that he can get serious people to join the community through word of mouth and by personally speaking to people. I think this is a good approach when you are not rushing or looking at break-even at the earliest. Not every organization looks for breaking-even, but if you would like to sustain on the long-run, you need credibility and serious community.
Swaroop who started Ion, has a good and simple idea. In India, most of the time we do not carry our laptop to charge i-Pod. So, they have come up with a simple charger for charing their music machine.
Ramji did mention that having a “Personalized Story” for your idea would add lot of value in explaining what your service/solution does…practically.

This is an overall summary of our discussion. I have few pictures of the event on my Flickr account.