Azim Premji donated Rs 27 crore per day in FY21, retains India’s top philanthropist rank

News Network
October 28, 2021

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Bengaluru, Oct 28: Software exporter Wipro's Azim Premji donated Rs 9,713 crore or Rs 27 crore a day to retain his top rank among Indian philanthropists in FY21.

Premji, the founder chairman of the company, increased his donation by nearly a fourth during the pandemic year, as per the Edelgive Hurun India Philanthropy List 2021, which had HCL's Shiv Nadar at second place with contributions of Rs 1,263 crore towards upliftment causes.

Mukesh Ambani of Reliance Industries, India's richest man by a distance, came third on the list with a Rs 577 crore contribution and was succeeded by Kumar Mangalam Birla with Rs 377 crore. The second richest Indian Gautam Adani is eighth on the givers' list with a donation of Rs 130 crore towards disaster relief.

Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani's ranking improved to fifth with a Rs 183 crore donation with “societal thinking” being identified as the primary cause.

“At present, most of the money is going to fundamental aspects like education and healthcare because of the requirements on the ground. Nilekani has indeed made interesting contributions, and in 10 years, we will have broader civil society issues feature as primary causes,” Hurun India's managing director and chief researcher Anas Rahman Junaid said.

He said as the age profile of the givers shifts to those under-40, and many of them being self-made ones also presents a hopeful picture.

There are a few new entrants into the list, including the largest stocks investor Rakesh Jhunjunwala, who donated a fourth of his overall earnings or Rs 50 crore in FY21 with efforts on education. Jhunjunwala, who recently had a private meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is among the backers of Ashoka University, as per a statement.

Brothers Nithin and Nikhil Kamath committed $100 million (Rs 750 crore) over the next few years to support individuals, organisations and companies working on solutions for climate change and are 35th on the list.

Former chairman of engineering major Larsen & Toubro, A M Naik, is 11th on the list with a donation of Rs 112 crore, it said, adding that he has pledged to give away 75 per cent of his income for charitable purposes.

Others in the top ten givers include the Hinduja Family, Bajaj Family, Anil Agarwal and the Burman family.

Nine women find their place in the list led by a Rs 69 crore donation by Rohini Nilekani of Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies and, followed by Leena Gandhi Tewari of USV who donated Rs 24 crore, and Anu Aga of Thermax donated Rs 20 crore.

Based on the place of residence, Mumbai led with 31 per cent of the list and was followed by New Delhi 17 per cent and Bengaluru 10 per cent.

The pharma industry has the largest number of philanthropists followed by automobile and auto components and software and services.

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News Network
November 19,2021

Ghaziabad, Nov 19: Terming Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement to withdraw the three contentious farm bills as a beginning, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait reiterated that the protesting farmers will return to their homes only after the decision is duly passed by the Parliament. 

He also stressed that the government should talk to farmers over the issue of minimum support price (MSP) for crops and other issues.

The BKU national spokesperson said this on Twitter soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced repealing the three farm laws, which were at the centre of the farmers' protest since November 26 last year.

"The protest will not be withdrawn immediately, we will wait for the day when the farm laws are repealed in Parliament. Along with MSP, the government should talk to farmers on other issues too," Tikait tweeted in Hindi. 

Addressing the nation on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti, the prime minister said the three farm laws were for the benefit of farmers but "we couldn't convince a section of farmers despite best efforts".

The goal of the three farm laws was to empower farmers, especially small farmers, he said.

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News Network
November 29,2021

New Delhi, Nov 29: Intelligence agencies have sounded an alert after Sikhs for Justice released an online video appealing to farmers to 'gherao' Parliament and hoist the 'Khalistani' flag there today. Delhi Police and other agencies have been asked to remain alert and vigilant. 

The Centre is planning to bring it in Rajya Sabha on Monday itself after it is passed by Lok Sabha.

Sources said the Bill was circulated among Rajya Sabha MPs on November 26 and the government may move it in Rajya Sabha in the afternoon after the Lower House passes it.

The Council General of Sikh for Justice Gurpatwant Singh Pannu has released a video on YouTube, appealing to gherao the Parliament and hoist the Khalistani flag during the winter session of Parliament.

Pannu has said in the video that the one who hoists the flag of Khalistan on the Parliament will be given a reward of 125000 US dollars.

The Intelligence agencies have asked all the agencies including Delhi Police to be on alert as well as to make elaborate security arrangements around the Parliament.

Parliament's winter session 2021 is set to begin on Monday and will conclude on December 23.

The BJP-led government has a heavy agenda for the winter session with its legislative business including Farm Laws Repeal Bill 2021.

Lok Sabha's Business Advisory Committee (BAC) is scheduled to meet at 10:30 am on Monday as the Parliament's winter session 2021 commences on Monday. 

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News Network
November 20,2021

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New Delhi, Nov 20: BJP MP Varun Gandhi, who has been increasingly offering views divergent from his party, on Saturday posted online a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, listing four big demands following the centre's surprise cancellation of the controversial farm laws.

Reminding the Prime Minister that over 700 farmers would have still been alive had he taken the decision earlier, the MP demanded ₹ 1 crore compensation for those who died in the course of the year-long protest.

He also demanded that all "all politically motivated false" police cases filed against farmers must be dropped and their calls for widening the programme of guaranteed prices for farm produce known as Minimum Support Price or MSP be accepted, saying their movement wouldn''t end without it.

Mr Gandhi also raised the deaths of protesters in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri last month where a BJP minister's son and aides have been accused of running over a group of farmers, triggering violence and leaving eight people dead.

"I thank you for your large-heartedness in announcing that these three laws will be repealed. More than 700 of our farmer brothers and sisters have been martyred in this movement, as they peacefully protested in extremely difficult and hostile conditions. I believe that if this decision had been taken earlier, all these innocent lives would not have been lost," he wrote.

"All politically motivated false FIRs that have been registered as weapons of harassment against our farmers during this movement must immediately be quashed," Mr Gandhi said.

"This (farmers') movement will not end without the resolution of this demand and there will be widespread anger amongst them, which will continue to emerge in one form or the other. Therefore, it is very important for the farmers to get the statutory guarantee of MSP for their crops. The MSP should also be based on the C2+50% formula of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices," he wrote.

On Lakhimpur Kheri, he wrote, "Many leaders sitting in senior positions have given provocative statements against our agitating farmers. It is the result of such statements and the adversarial atmosphere created around the movement, that on October 3, five of our farmer brothers were crushed to death by vehicles in Lakhimpur Kheri. This heartbreaking incident is a blemish on our democracy. It is my request to you that appropriately strict action is taken against the Union Minister who has been connected to this incident, so that there is a fair enquiry."

The sharp critique for the BJP is the latest from Varun Gandhi who was dumped from his party's National Executive after calling for justice for the families of farmers killed in UP's Lakhimpur Kheri and speaking out in support of other farmers protesting the centre's new laws.

A member of the Nehru-Gandhi family that controls the opposition Congress, Varun Gandhi and his mother joined the BJP in 2004 just months before the party went out of power but are believed to have fallen out of favour with the leadership in recent years.

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