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3-November -2023

1. Vice President calls Company Secretaries as ‘custodians of corporate governance’.

Topic: GS3 – corporate governance


  • Vice President Shri Jagdeep Dhankar during his address at the 51st National Convention of Company Secretaries in Varanasi – Emphasized the importance of Company Secretaries detaching from management objectives and focusing on statutory compliance, warning that even a slight deviation can have significant consequences.
  • Encouraged upholding the highest standards of professionalism and the Rule of Law to drive the nation forward.
  • In the light of this news, it is important to understand the issues and way forward for the corporate governance in India.

Issues with corporate governance in India:

  • Weak enforcement of regulations:Indian regulators have been criticized for being too lenient on corporate crime and for failing to enforce regulations effectively. This has created an environment where companies feel they can get away with poor corporate governance practices.
  • Lack of transparency:Indian companies are often opaque about their financial performance and business practices. This makes it difficult for shareholders to hold them accountable for their actions.
  • Concentration of ownershipA small number of families control a large majority of India’s listed companies. This gives them significant influence over the way these companies are run, and can lead to conflicts of interest.
  • Lack of independent directors:Many Indian boards of directors are dominated by insiders, who may be reluctant to challenge the management. This can lead to poor decision-making and a lack of accountability.
  • Poor shareholder rights: Indian shareholders have relatively weak rights. This makes it difficult for them to challenge the management or to hold them accountable for their actions.
  • Conflicts of interest: Indian companies often have complex ownership structures, which can lead to conflicts of interest. For example, a company may have a controlling shareholder who is also a supplier or customer. This can lead to the company making decisions that are not in the best interests of all shareholders.

Way forward:

  • Strengthen enforcement of regulations:Indian regulators need to be more proactive in enforcing regulations and punishing corporate crime. This would send a strong signal that poor corporate governance practices will not be tolerated.
  • Improve transparency:Indian companies need to be more transparent about their financial performance and business practices. This would make it easier for shareholders to hold them accountable for their actions.
  • Reduce concentration of ownership: The Indian government could consider measures to reduce the concentration of ownership in listed companies. This would make it more difficult for a small number of families to control these companies and would give shareholders more say in how they are run.
  • Increase the number of independent directors:Indian companies should have more independent directors on their boards. This would help to ensure that the board is able to challenge the management and act in the best interests of all shareholders.
  • Strengthen shareholder rights: Indian shareholders should have stronger rights. This would make it easier for them to challenge the management and to hold them accountable for their actions.
  • Address conflicts of interestIndian companies should take steps to address conflicts of interest. This could include developing and implementing conflict of interest policies and procedures.

Steps taken by Indian government in this regard:

  • Enacting the Companies Act, 2013:The Companies Act, 2013 is a comprehensive piece of legislation that covers all aspects of corporate governance. It introduced a number of new provisions to strengthen corporate governance, such as:
    1. Mandating the appointment of independent directors on boards of directors
    2. Requiring companies to disclose more information about their financial performance and business practices
    3. Strengthening the powers of regulators to enforce corporate governance laws
  • Establishing the National Foundation for Corporate Governance (NFCG):The NFCG is an independent body that works to promote good corporate governance practices in India. It offers training programs for directors and other corporate stakeholders, and it also conducts research on corporate governance issues.
  • Launching the Investor Education and Protection Fund (IEPF): The IEPF is a fund that is used to compensate investors who have suffered losses due to corporate fraud or mismanagement.
  • Strengthening the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI):SEBI is the Indian securities regulator. It has been given more powers to enforce corporate governance laws and to take action against companies that violate these laws.

Question: Critically examine the challenges to corporate governance in India and suggest measures to improve it. 


2. Union Minister Shri Piyush Goyal said India is working towards meeting country’s energy need with clean sources.

Topic: GS3 – clean energy


  • Union Minister Shri Piyush Goyal spoke at the ORF’s first edition of the Energy Transition Dialogue in New Delhi, where he discussed India’s ongoing efforts and challenges in transitioning to clean and sustainable energy sources.

Key points made by Union Minister Shri Piyush Goyal during the Energy Transition Dialogue in New Delhi:

  • India is committed to a significant energy transition with the goal of meeting the country’s energy needs from clean sources.
  • India anticipates substantial economic growth over the next 30 years, which will lead to a considerable increase in energy demand across all sectors.
  • India’s energy transition involves moving away from traditional consumption patterns and addressing the energy needs associated with this growth.
  • The Indian government has been increasing its targets for clean energy adoption and is actively supporting the production of clean energy equipment. The focus also includes transitioning to green hydrogen and ammonia.
  • The Production Linked Incentive (PLI) program, a government initiative to promote manufacturing in India, has been successful in various sectors, including green energy, auto components, specialty skills, and technical textiles.
  • Transitioning away from coal is a critical aspect of India’s energy transition. While wind and solar energy sources are intermittent, India’s power needs cannot be met solely by nuclear plants.
  • Regarding Carbon Tax, India is in dialogue with the European Union and European countries to ensure that there is no disadvantage in Indian exports to Europe. If the country of origin taxes carbon at a similar level to the EU, there will be no additional tax on Indian exports.
  • Shri Goyal emphasized that India’s contribution to greenhouse gas emissions is relatively low, and developed countries should take greater responsibility in providing funding and technology to support the energy transition in less developed and developing countries.
  • He expressed disappointment with the developed world for not providing adequate financial support and relying primarily on private capital, which falls short of the needs of the transitioning countries.


3. National Efficient Cooking Programme launched, to promote affordable and energy-efficient induction cookers

Topic: GS2 – Government initiatives


  • The launch of the National Efficient Cooking Programme (NECP) and the Energy Efficient Fans Programme (EEFP) by Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) is a significant development in India’s ongoing efforts to promote energy efficiency and sustainability.
  • These programs were unveiled by Union Minister Shri R. K. Singh during an event held in New Delhi on November 2, 2023.

National Efficient Cooking Programme (NECP):

  • NECP introduces induction-based cook-stoves that offer a 25-30% cost advantage over traditional cooking methods, promoting energy savings and cost-effective cooking solutions.
  • EESL plans to deploy 20 lakh induction cook-stoves across India to reduce the environmental impact of cooking methods, improve air quality, and enhance health.
  • The program aims to accelerate the adoption of modern electric cooking devices in Indian kitchens and has partnered with Modern Energy Cooking Services (MECS) for large-scale deployment.

Energy Efficient Fans Programme (EEFP):

  • EEFP focuses on deploying energy-efficient BLDC fans with the goal of distributing 1 crore ceiling fans.
  • The program reduces energy consumption, environmental impact, and electricity bills while enhancing consumer comfort.
  • It was initiated during the G20 Energy Transitions Working Group and aims to phase out inefficient fans.

Shift to Electric Cooking:

  • Union Minister Shri R. K. Singh emphasized the importance of shifting from imported energy sources to indigenous forms, including electric cooking.
  • He highlighted that there is no difference between food cooked using electric cooking and gas stoves, and this message needs to be propagated widely.
  • Electric cooking can reduce costs for poor families, especially for those who cannot afford gas cylinders.
  • The Minister stressed the need to rapidly phase out energy-inefficient fans and encourage the use of more efficient models.

EESL’s Contribution to Energy Transition:

  • Shri R. K. Singh commended EESL and the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) for their contributions to India’s energy transition.
  • The government’s roadmap involves electrifying the economy, shifting from traditional energy sources to electricity, and promoting green electricity.
  • EESL played a significant role in transitioning to LED lighting and other energy-efficient solutions.

Future Goals:

  • The Energy Efficient Fans Programme is expected to trigger a significant replacement demand, contributing to energy efficiency and reducing carbon footprints.
  • EESL aims to capitalize on the potential for savings by deploying 1 crore 5-star energy-efficient ceiling fans across India.
  • Conventional fans consume more energy compared to energy-efficient models, with substantial potential for energy conservation.

About EESL:

  • EESL, operating under the Ministry of Power, is a leading Energy Service Company known for promoting energy-efficient products and solutions.
  • Their portfolio includes LED bulbs, tube lights, fans, air conditioners, streetlights, and electric vehicles.
  • EESL’s transparent procurement processes have resulted in significant energy savings, reduced peak demand, and greenhouse gas emissions.



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