The corporate spending for various activities related to COVID-19 including the promotion of healthcare, preventive healthcare, sanitation, disaster management would be considered as a part of the Corporate Social Responsibility, the government said.

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs in a circular said that corporate spending for various activities related to COVID-19 would be treated as CSR.

The interpretation of the activities qualifying as CSR for Covid-19 will also be interpreted liberally to prevent red tape from squeezing fund flows.

Ministry of Corporate Affairs in its official statement said, “Keeping in view of the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in India, its declaration as pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and, the decision of Government of India to treat this as a notifies disaster, it is hereby clarified that spending of CSR funds  for COVID-19 is eligible CSR activity.”

The CSR rules make it mandatory for large Indian firms to set aside at least 2 per cent of their average net profit for socially responsible expenditures.

The norms are applicable to firms with at least Rs 5 crore net profit or Rs 1000 crore turnover or  Rs 500 crore net worth.

With the approval to include COVID-19 huge funds flow is expected to come into the healthcare segment.