Jamshedpur। The Fr Arrupe Center for Ecology and Sustainability (FACES) at XLRI hosts an annual oration in honor of Dr. Verghese Kurien, the esteemed Founder of AMUL, renowned as “the Milkman of India.” This event serves as a forum for engaging with and gaining insights from influential thinkers, social innovators, professionals in the development sector, and policymakers who have notably advanced the concept of an empowered, thriving, and sustainable society.
This year, Ms. Vaishali Nigam Sinha, Co-Founder of ReNew and Chairperson – Sustainability delivered the 10th Dr. Verghese Kurien Memorial Oration on the topic “Empowering The Next Generation: Taking Action On Climate Change & Sustainability.”
Delivering the oration on the topic, Ms. Vaishal said, “Climate change is not a social issue anymore. It is not a theoretical issue anymore. It is not an idea that we talk about in conferences anymore. It is an area where people are working, practitioners are working to come up with models for solutions. The population of wildlife has dropped by 60% in just about 40 years. More than 800 million people without access to electricity and 2.8 billion don’t have access to power in the world. The IPCC Report claims that India’s high levels of global warming and emissions can lead to GDP loss of about 92% by the end of this century. There is a huge social economic impact of Climate Change. Close to 2050, close to 35 million Indians will face coastal flooding and this number will rise to 40-50 million by the end of the century. The era of global warming has ended and the era of global boiling has just begun. As individuals we all have our own responsibility to work towards bringing small changes.”
She also emphasized on the commitment and passion that drove Dr. Kurien to bring about the change in the society. “As young minds, we should take each stride with a huge amount of honesty, sincerity and determination. XLRI is empowering each one of you to step out into the real world and be the change leaders”, she said.
Fr. S George, Director at XLRI Jamshedpur said, “Dr. Verghese Kurien’s life was characterized by a commitment to making a difference. Widely acknowledged as the Father of the White Revolution in India, he is globally renowned as a socially responsible entrepreneur. Since 1997, India has remained the largest milk producer, thanks to Dr. Kurien’s efforts, involving a workforce of 70 million rural households and 70% workforce that comprises women. In memory of Dr. Kurien, XLRI established the oration to honor his legacy by promoting and spreading the concept of an empowered, just, and sustainable society.”
Dr L Tata Raghu Ram, Chairman of FACES – Fr Arrupe Centre for Ecology & Sustainability addressed the gathering. “FACES was established in 2011, it is a multidisciplinary centre of excellence that aims to promote policies, practices and dialogue which have an impact on holistic and sustainable development of society and enterprises. XLRI & Tata Steel Foundation signed MoU to offer one year AICTE approved Post Graduate Certificate Programme in CSR Leadership. First Batch will commence the programme from January 2024. As part of broader reimagining XLRI initiative, FACES aims to establish a rural research lab to action research knowledge creation and dissemination to enhance the community connect and create social good. Some of the projects in the pipeline are: Zonal master plan for eco-sensitive zone of Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary by the Jharkhand Government and MoEFCC Government of India. MoU is being drafted and worked on between the Director, Project Elephant, Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary and XLRI which will be initiated in a couple of months. FACES & Department of Industries, Jharkhand Government are actively engaged in final negotiation to create a circular economy base incubation centre at XLRI Jamshedpur to create 50 circular economy entrepreneurship opportunities in Jharkhand which might be able to create around 500-1000 jobs in the State.” He discussed many such ongoing activities of the Fr Arrupe Centre for Ecology & Sustainability and XLRI Jamshedpur. He also introduced the student committees – Team SIGMA Oikos, Team PEACE and Team SAMARTHYA that work closely on CSR Activities, Sustainability Practices and Society Welfare. “FACES always looks forward to creative inputs and cooperation and a lot of vigor in the coming year”, he added.
It was also announced that Dr. Kalyan Bhaskar, XLRI Jamshedpur is now a Member of the Committee on ESG, Convenor – Working Group on Circular Economy of the Bureau of India Standards.