Many more leading lights in India Inc are turning to philanthropy. The latest to join the bandwagon is A M Naik, Group Executive Chairman, L&T, engineering and construction conglomerate.
With just a year to go before stepping down from one of India's top-notch private sector company, Naik said he would pledge 75 percent of his total earnings to charity.
Invoking his father and grandfather, Naik said since they hardly had any money, they were committed to the poor, and following their footsteps he has decided to use 75 percent of his income towards setting up two charitable trusts, The Economic Times reported.
Since 1995, Naik has donated Rs 125 crore to charitable initiatives, the ET report said.
Naik, who has been with Larsen & Toubro for more than 50 years - he joined the firm in 1965, will undertake philanthropical activities through two charitable trusts - the Naik Charitable Trust for education and skill training and the Nirali Memorial Medical Trust. The latter has been named after his grand daughter who died of cancer in 2007, the report said.
Not just Naik, a 2015 report released by China-based Hurun showed India's philanthropy list was led by Wipro Chairman Azim Hashim Premji. According to the report, Premji donated Rs 27,514 crore last year, accounting for 80 percent of the total donations of Rs 35,000 crore made by 36 Indian philanthropists, a Mint report said in January this year.
In fact, Premji's philonthropy act helped improved the average size of donation to Rs 900 crore from the pathetic Rs 300 crore in 2014, although the number of philanthropists fell to 36 from 50 in 2014, the Mint report said.
The Hurun report also highlighted that the education sector was the most favored philanthropic cause, which accounted for 84 percent of total donations.
Besides Premji, former Infosys co-founder Nandan and his wife Rohini Nilekani donated Rs 2,404 crore, followed by Infosys chief N.R. Narayana Murthy (Rs 1,322 crore) and co-founder K. Dinesh and family (Rs 1,238 crore), the Mint report said.
According to a Bain & Company report on India's Philanthropy report released in 2015, philanthropy in India is significantly ahead of that in other countries with similar levels of prosperity.
"However, the potential scope for philanthropy in India remains vast, with the country facing many unaddressed social development problems," the Bain report said.