The capital city of Bihar state, Patna used to go by many names – Pataliputra, Patalipattan, Pataligram, Kusumpur, and Azimabad. Patna district is the most populated in all the districts of Bihar. It is one of the oldest inhabited places in the world, its history and tradition dating back to the dawn of civilization. Ancient Patna was the seat of power and capital of many kingdoms like Haryanka, Nanda, Magadh, Mauryan, Sunga, Kanva, Gupta, Pala and Suri.
Patna has long been a major agricultural centre of trade and industry. The region is famous for the medium-grained Patna rice. It is an important business centre in eastern India. Major industries in the city include leather, handicraft and food processing. There are four industrial areas in Patna – Patliputra, Fatuha, MIP Bihta, Bihta. Food processing is the sector rising the fastest, because of the availability of surplus agro products in the district. CSR in Patna is still far below satisfactory since Bihar scores the lowest on most parameters for corporate social responsibility. Yet some private companies and PSUs like Indian Oil are active on the social welfare front. We present some of the top CSR projects in Patna.
Indian Oil Corporation’s robotic scavenger
In a bid to end the practice of manual scavenging in Patna, IOCL (Indian Oil Corporation Limited) has funded a mechanised sewage cleansing bot. ‘Bandicoot’ is a robotic manhole-cleaning system that costs Rs. 40 lakh. Municipal commissioner Himanshu Sharma formally launched the scavenging machine in the city jointly with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) – Bihar.
The management panel stays outside the manhole and the spider-like construction with an arm and 4 legs enters the manhole and clears the silt and blockages. The management panel helps in internal inspection with the assistance of infrared cameras. UNFPA – Bihar hired an expert agency to operate the cleaning bot as part of the MoU that the Patna Municipal Corporation has signed. Bandicoot has two interconnected buildings.
Allana Group’s healthcare initiatives
The Allana group was established in 1865 and is an exporter of branded processed food products and agro commodities. The group has founded four different trusts with a view to take up CSR and social welfare activities: Allana Foundation, Allana Charitable Trust, World Memon Foundation and Joosabbhoy A. Allana Charities. Lt. Abdul Razak Allana and Lt. Hussain Allana from the company initiated activities in the field of medicine and education.
The CSR activities of Allana include treatment for heart diseases including Bypass surgery, Valve replacement, Angiography, Angioplasty, and dialysis units for renal kidney failure patients in Patna. The company also organises medical health check up camps in partnership with the NGO Imarat E Shariah in the villages surrounding Patna.
ISM Patna’s education programmes
International School of Management, Patna conducts various CSR activities to help children and youth who cannot afford quality education. Students of ISM Patna conduct computer literacy classes for the students of the primary schools of nearby villages. A batch of 15 students is selected and they are brought to the Institute’s lab every Saturday for close to 3 months. The Institute conducts English and communication training through the use of Language Lab facility at the campus. Training modules are specifically customised to cater for the needs of students from nearby villages.
The institute has installed an Internet Kiosk at the campus to help people from nearby villages who are seeking information regarding crop varieties, current market rates of their produce, weather forecasts, information regarding doctors, etc.
Investing on CSR in Patna will not only ensure sustainable development of the city but also improve its industrial scope.