Prime minister Narendra Modi on Monday gave a 100-day deadline to the heads of central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) to come out with a roadmap with “measurable targets” for strengthening state-owned companies and promoting development activities.
Addressing a CPSE conclave in New Delhi, Modi also suggested that their CSR spend should be focused largely on one specific theme each year.
In this context, he appreciated the success that was achieved when this CSR spend was utilised for toilet construction in schools.
He said that one good theme could be the development of 115 aspirational districts identified by NITI Aayog for special focus and CPSEs can also take up skill development programmes, as part of CSR.
Thematic presentations were made to the prime minister on subjects such as corporate governance, human resource management, financial re-engineering, innovations and technology and Vision 2022 for New India.
Appreciating the presentations, Modi said that the government has given operational freedom to the CPSEs, so that they can improve their performance. He said that they have contributed significantly in nation-building and the national economy since independence.
“I need to learn a lot from you. If I spend more time with you, I shall emulate what I learn from you in the government. I hope that exactly after 100 days, whatever you have said today, you will come to me with a foolproof roadmap and after fixing responsibility,” Modi said.
He asked the CPSEs to come with implementation roadmaps along with “measurable targets”.
Expressing concern over little procurement by CPSEs from micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), Modi prodded them to buy more from the small units and also ensure timely payments. In 2016, the procurement by CPSEs was only Rs 25,000 crore from MSMEs of the total Rs 1.30 lakh crore.
Modi further said that it is not enough to rest on past laurels, but is also important to adapt to the emerging challenges. He said that enterprise and innovation should be the guiding principles in the 21st century. The incentives, imagination and institution building would be the three keys to success.
Elaborating, he mentioned that improving operational and financial performance, transparency and accountability in processes, procurement through the Government e-Marketplace (GeM) platform and from MSMEs and preparation for technological disruptions such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing and robotics.
Identifying five challenges for CPSEs, Modi said that they should focus on maximising their geo-strategic reach, minimising import bill, integrating innovation and research, optimal utilisation of CSR Fund and coming up with a new development model by 2022.
The prime minister also asked the CPSEs managements to hold their meetings at lesser known tourist destinations.
This, he added, will help promote tourism.