Press Releases

  • TERI Foundation Day acclaims Corporate Leadership & the Role of Business in Nation Building

    2 September 2010

    Sunil Bharti Mittal stresses on symbiotic relations between the three pillars of country to make India move forward

    India is witnessing a quantum leap forward in all sectors of the economy, and the need of the hour is to establish a harmonious relation between infrastructure building and utilization of resources. This message came out strong at 9th Darbari Seth Memorial Lecture that marked the Foundation Day of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI).

    Felicitating TERI for its dynamic role in raising of consciousness on the impact of climate change and its forward-thinking researches on sustainable development solutions, the Chief Guest Mr Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman & Group CEO of Bharti Enterprises, presented a deeply reflective 'way forward' on the issue of Corporate Leadership: Role of Business in Nation Building.

    Signaling the symbiotic relationship between the three pillars of the country as the prime motivator of a well-balanced economy, Mr Mittal marked the first pillar as the combination of Legislature, Executive and the Judiciary; and Civil Society as the second pillar -- represented by community groups, non governmental organisations and the media "which are the bed-rock of the democracy and act as the watchdog for the electorate by providing timely 'check and balance' inputs."

    Highlighting the role of Business as the third pillar, the first generation entrepreneur turned MNC head said that the goods and services were the fruits for the nation to move forward. "Do businesses build a nation? My answer would be an emphatic yes," the Bharti group head said. However, he tempered the qualification with three checkpoints that the business sector needs to factor in.

    "Alternate Energy is the first factor. Business can only go forward by supporting the government - and TERI's - efforts in alternate energy. It has to come up with the technological drive," said Mr Mittal. The second factor, according to the Bharti group head, was 'Taking Responsibility' - through CSR activities that integrate environment friendly technologies with livelihood options. "The job of Business is to go beyond business," he commented.

    "The final factor is Philanthropy. Corporates need to go back to the precedents set by our domestic enterprises in the pre-Independence years that got bottled up after the first couple of decades post-Independence," pointed out the head of Bharti Group which set up a foundation in the year 2000.

    "The answer lies in adopting the best practices of the Corporate Sector. Education and health-old age care are areas that business houses need to go out and start combining forces. Government and political leaders cannot do it alone," said Mr Mittal.

    Presiding over the event, former chief of Madhya Pradesh and General Secretary of the All India Congress Committee, Mr Digvijay Singh, saluted the vision of TERI's founder, Late Mr Darbari Seth, for his ingenuity and enterprise. He hailed Dr R K Pachauri for "establishing TERI as a leading institute and a guiding light in the international scenario."

    Commending TERI for its researches in the field of alternate forms of energy, especially solar, Mr Singh pointed out that India's energy scenario was poised at an interesting stage - facing the dual challenge of low generation and high demand, and the impact of climate change as the gap gets filled over the coming years. "Moreover,, thousands of villages are still living in the dark, and solar energy is likely to be the off-grid provider," he said.

    In his 'vote of thanks' address, TERI's Director General Dr R K Pachauri expressed deep gratitude to the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, "for his expression of unstinted support for me personally and the organizations that I am associated with including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and TERI."

    Dr Pachauri also dwelt on TERI's relationship with the Centre, the states as well as the local governments, which gives an opportunity to be able to provide an outlet for the research being done by the institute. "This takes shape the shape not only of policy analysis which we hope will have overall benefits in improving the human condition, but also innovation at the grassroots level by which the challenge of widespread poverty in the country can be met more effectively and in a manner that ensures sustainable development."

    TERI's Foundation Day ceremony felicitated 14 employees who had completed 20 years of service. The event also marked the announcement of the 'Roll of Honours' for 10 research professionals for their positive contribution in their respective fields. The mementoes and certificates were given away by Mr Mittal and Mr Singh.

    The dignitaries at the event included Dr Arcot Ramachandran, Chairman TERI, the two Governing Council members, Mr Deepak S Parekh, Chairman of the Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC), and Prof B V Sreekantan. The distinguished audience had Mr Brijmohan Lall Munjal, founder of the Hero Group manufacturing Hero Cycles and Hero Honda motorcycles.