Banks are an engine of much of India’s growth and development, dealing collectively with thousands of companies ranging from globe-straddling MNCs to micro enterprises. As the key source of financing for most projects, banks’ financing norms could be used to strengthen the social responsibility of the wider corporate sector. However, for that to happen, banks and other financial institutions need to adhere to Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) and other responsible business norms. And the very first step is to encourage them to transparently disclose information in the public domain about their policies as well as their compliance.
Public disclosure of information: A first step towards responsible banking in India is a brief analysis of some of the key findings of Business Responsibility Reports submitted by banks in 2015-16.