Corporate India spent as much as ₹ 25,715 crore towards various Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) projects in 2020-21, Lok Sabha was informed on Monday.

This was higher than CSR spend of ₹ 24,955 crore in 2019-20 and ₹ 20,197 crore in 2018-19, data available with Corporate Affairs Ministry (MCA) showed.

Union Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman provided this information in a written reply to a starred question in Lok Sabha on Monday. 

Under the Companies Act, 2013, Government does not spend any CSR fund as there is no provision for allocation of CSR funds to the Government. 

The CSR framework is disclosure-based and CSR-eligible companies are required to file details of CSR expenditure annually in the MCA21 registry. Further, the companies are required to file CSR details for financial year 2021-22 on or before March 31, 2023.

Under the Companies Act, CSR is a board-driven process and the board of the company is empowered to plan, decide, execute and monitor CSR activities of the company based on the recommendation of its CSR Committee. 

The Government does not issue any specific direction to the companies to spend in any particular geographical area or activity. 

Section 135 of the Act mandates every company having net worth of ₹500 crore or more, or turnover of ₹1,000 crore or more, or net profit of ₹5 crore or more during the immediately preceding financial year, to spend at least two per cent of the average net profits of the company made over immediately preceding three financial years towards CSR as per the CSR Policy of the company.