The COVID-19 pandemic has been a wake-up call for the entire world.  In India, one of the worst affected have been the migrant workers who got stranded when the nation-wide lockdown was imposed. Hundreds of thousands of these workers, who were settled in various parts of India, have subsequently returned to their native states – a majority of them by foot, some on cycles and some hitching rides on trucks. The bad news is, for most of them, the paranoia of the virus will linger for a long time, rendering them fearful of returning to their place of work even in the post COVID-19 phase.

Under the given scenario, the rural, native areas of these workers are suddenly facing a huge influx of people – this obviously demands more infrastructural development for their support and sustenance. Through the ambit of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), this is a much-needed time for corporates and big business houses to utilize their resources to help develop public amenities to support projects around farming, clean drinking water, rural electrification etc. It will certainly provide the right platform to bridge the massive infrastructural gap that exists in these parts. After all, the rural areas continue to be the heart of the country, accounting for approximately 67% of the population.

Healthcare, the highest priority during the withering effects of the pandemic, can benefit hugely by CSR programs. Globally, India still has the largest number of people defecating in the open. Sanitation and drinking water projects thus are the need of the hour.

Having said this, it is important to point out that the electrical grid connectivity in the rural areas is extremely poor, and hence the use of solar power to implement various CSR projects has gained momentum. The generation of solar power not only has a positive impact on the environment, but also leads to uninterrupted supply of electricity. Not only can this enrich the quality of living in the rural areas but can also nurture education, wherein students can study even after school hours.

Solar power will also provide a boost to agriculture, the primary occupation of the rural households and the mainstay of their socio-economic structure. A case-in-point are solar agri-pumps, an environmentally friendly alternative to approximately 26 million agri-pumps installed in the country, of which 10 million or so run on diesel.

Last, but not the least, CSR initiatives revolving around solar energy will also pave avenues for entrepreneurship and employment generation among the rural youth. Given the simple and modular nature of solar systems, a large number of semi-skilled labourers can be employed for installation, management and related activities concerned with these systems.

All in all, this seems to be the right time for our corporates to step in and act on their heightened sensitivity about solar energy to curb the ill-effects of the pandemic. These noble CSR initiatives will go a long way in providing ‘sunny days’ for rural India!

Nimbus Solar Solutions has been at the forefront of providing innovative CSR solar solutions to Multi-National Corporates. Having implemented over a hundred such CSR Projects, they have a long list of prestigious projects and clients. To discover more, kindly visit www.nimbussolar.com today!