Name: Abhimanyu Sharma
Section : J
Government society and Business
Answer 1: ITC Manages the dilemma of balancing profit objectives with Social objectives by carefully interweaving the two in a manner that they both support each other. o In support of this approach ITC’s S. Sivakumar CEO, IBD has stated that this is the most sustainable and exciting way is to serve rural population while simultaneously generating shareholder value thus balancing the two
o Example: ITC’s E-Choupal profit oriented project was interwoven with ITC’s Sunehra Kal CSR project.
o As stated in the case in empowering the community through e-choupal, ITC gained both in terms of brand recognition and profits but also germinated the seeds of a profound social and economic transformation.
ITC’s e-choupal responds to some development needs of rural India but not all.
o Even in areas where the E-choupal initiative does contribute the scale of the response is limited by the need for ITC to balance profit with CSR. Thus E-Choupal’s activities can best be described as a supplement to government initiatives rather than outright substitutes. The Areas where E-Choupal has responded to the needs of rural India are o Economic empowerment through better access to markets for farmers, though as a limitation it still pays only the Mandi price and it purchases only in limited amounts o Financial inclusion through an information rich but low cost distribution channel for kissan credit cards, channel credit, insurance policies and third party loans, though it does charge a fee for all products sold through this channel and products sold are those that have a profit motive.
o Primary Education by providing digital content and virtual training sessions to improve scholastic abilities and lower dropout rates. Infrastructural support through SLCs that provide
books and uniforms. Though the digital content is at best a complement to primary education aimed at weaker students and the SLCs only provide books and uniforms o Women Empowerment through life stock development and micro-credit programs. Though still remain confined to the four walls of the house.
o Healthcare through a three tier system that at the Choupal level includes rudimentary diagnostics via telemedicine, drug sales on the prescription of the Choupal Sagar Doctor, Simple pathological tests and creating awareness on disease prevention. At the Choupal Sagar Level includes a clinic with a doctor, a basic pathological laboratory, a pharmacy and a telemedicine center. At the third level there were network hospitals that linked to the choupal sagar clinics that handled complex cases, provided specialist advice through telelink and gave clinic doctors the information they needed. Though all these services are provided at a cost to the rural people who are impoverished.
o The Areas that are not covered at all by the e-choupal at all include, access to proper Sanitation Facilities and provision of clean drinking water and electricity as these cannot be delivered or be supplemented by the digital infrastructure of the E-Choupal model.
Answer2: The first method to leverage IT is to upgrade the current IT infrastructure with features that improve delivery of services and enable complex transactions. These include o Integrating telephones with terminals, so that the Sanchallaks, can reach out to a centralized call center for help on complex financial products thus reducing their training needs o Enabling rudimentary E-commerce, would allow farmers to buy products of the choupal sagar more frequently as they no longer need to travel to it, thus boosting sales o Holding E-Auctions of grains, by enabling other traders to use a web enabled platform where they can bid for grains tested and certified for quality by the sanchalak, and farmers can accept bids using the E-Choupal terminal, thus improving transparency of prices o Enable Video...
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