Ministry of Corporate Affairs under the goverment of India has revised the National Voluntary Guidelines on Social, Environmental and Economic Responsibilities of Business, 2011 (NVGs) and formulated the National Guidelines on Responsible Business Conduct (NGRBC). These guidelines urge businesses to actualise the principles in letter and spirit.
These principles are, 1) Businesses should conduct and govern themselves with integrity in a manner that is Ethical, Transparent and Accountable. 2) Businesses should provide goods and services in a manner that is sustainable and safe. 3) Businesses should respect and promote the well-being of all employees, including those in their value chains. 4) Businesses should respect the interests of and be responsive to all their stakeholders. 5) Businesses should respect and promote human rights. 6) Businesses should respect and make efforts to protect and restore the environment. 7) Businesses, when engaging in influencing public and regulatory policy, should do so in a manner that is responsible and transparent. 8) Businesses should promote inclusive growth and equitable development. 9) Businesses should engage with and provide value to their consumers in a responsible manner.
The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has been taking various initiatives for ensuring responsible business conduct by companies. As a first step towards mainstreaming the concept of business responsibility, the ‘Voluntary Guidelines on Corporate Social Responsibility’ were issued in 2009. These guidelines were subsequently revised as ‘National Voluntary Guidelines on Social, Environmental and Economic Responsibilities of Business, 2011 (NVGS)’ after extensive consultations with business, academia, civil society organisations and the government. The NVGs were developed based on India’s socio-cultural context and priorities as well as global best practices.