Coimbatore: Larsen & Toubro, through its corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative, handed over two Integrated Community Development Projects (ICDP) at the hands of Mr. Shaffe Ahamed, Deputy Director, Department of Agriculture, Government of Tamil Nadu, at an event held at Kalangal Village in Sulur block.
The projects were launched in 2015 by Mr. Tha Murugan, Additional Director / Project Director, District Rural Development Authority. L&T through its CSR work has been realising its vision of building India’s social infrastructure by ensuring water availability followed by interventions in Agriculture, Sanitation and Education in rural areas.
L&T’s ICDP covers 2,028 hectares (ha) in Madukkarai and 1,585 ha in the Sulur blocks of the Coimbatore district. The program was deployed in partnership with the local communities led primarily by women. Starting with soil and water conservation, the program was extended in a phased manner to develop sanitation facilities and strengthen government schooling infrastructure.
Commenting on this occasion, Dr. Hasit Joshipura, Head - Corporate Centre, L&T said, “L&T’s interventions are unique in the Integrated Community Development space. Its aim is to achieve long-term, sustainable development for the local communities. One of the most rewarding accomplishments for L&T’s CSR is to witness the community members continuing ICDP work that was initiated by the company in 2015.”
The impact of L&T’s interventions is visible here. The water level rose from 940 feet (ft) to 550 ft in borewells and 55 ft in open wells. Soil interventions yielded 732 ha of additional arable land, 167 ha of irrigated land and 587 ha of fallow land for cultivation. This led to horticultural development of over 80 ha and 25% rise in crop yields.
It also impacted livestock by ensuring the availability of 30,000 tons of green fodder and 15,000 tons of dry fodder. 500 toilets were constructed for the landless, non-farming families and four government run schools were provided with the sanitation facilities.
Explaining the approach, Dr. M.R. Ramasubramanian, Executive Director, NAF, the NGO partner for the project, said, "We have executed the projects in collaboration with the local communities, who participated in the planning and execution process right from the inception. It involved the local panchayat and community members – strongly represented by women – for the ownership and maintenance of these projects.”
The projects have ensured alleviation of poverty, community awareness on civic issues, capacity building for the community, and participation of women in decision-making process, leading to overall empowerment and better quality of life for the neediest.
Currently L&T is in the process of introducing interventions related to improving access and quality of education in all the schools (18) in the project area.
L&T is committed to empower communities in which it operates. The company’s CSR theme is ‘Building India’s Social Infrastructure’, and the focus is on education, health, water & sanitation and skill development. The company facilitates several programs for the benefit of the community across the country and engages through CSR initiatives and volunteering activities.