|ITC believes that an
effective growth strategy for our nation must address the needs of rural India, home to
75% of our poor. It is imperative to ensure that India's economic growth is inclusive,
embracing its villages, so as to free millions of our disadvantaged citizens from the
indignity of poverty.
It is ITC's belief
that India's rural transformation cannot be brought about by the government alone. Nor can
the efforts of a few enterprises make a decisive difference. Only an inspired
public-private partnership can transform lives and landscapes in rural India. ITC's humble
endeavours have demonstrated that it is possible to create and sustain a model that can
harmonise the need for shareholder value creation with making a substantial contribution
ITC has partnered the Indian farmer for close to a
century. ITC is now engaged in elevating this partnership to a new paradigm by leveraging
information technology through its trail-blazing
e-Choupal initiative. Additionally, ITC is significantly widening its farmer partnerships
to embrace a host of value-adding activities: creating livelihoods by helping poor tribals
make their wastelands productive; investing in rainwater harvesting to bring much-needed
irrigation to parched drylands; empowering rural women by helping them evolve into
entrepreneurs; providing infrastructural support to make schools exciting for village
Through these rural partnerships, ITC touches the lives
of over 3 million villagers across India.
For ITC, these are expressions of a commitment
beyond the market. Of a conviction that country must come before corporation. Of a true
pride in being Citizen First.