Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) on Monday said that funds spent by companies to combat the novel coronavirus will be eligible to be classified as corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity.
"Keeping in view of the spread of novel Corona Virus (COVID-19) in India, its declaration as pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and, decision of Government of India to treat this as a notified disaster, it is hereby clarified that spending of CSR funds for COVID-19 is eligible CSR activity," a circular issued by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs dated 23 March 2020 said.
Funds may be spent for various activities related to COVID-19 under item (i) and (xii) of Schedule VII relating to promotion of health care, including preventive health care and sanitation, and, disaster management. Further, as per General Circular No. 21/2014 dated 18 June 2014, items in Schedule VII are broad based and may be interpreted liberally for this purpose. This issues with the approval of the competent authority, the MCA circular stated.
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