Prof. M.M. Goel
To commemorate Agarsen Jayanti on October 15, 2023 not only as an annual ritual, we should imbibe the spirit of social service with altruism as per his guidance. Maharaja Agarsen was a Suryavanshi King at Agroha (Haryana) in Dwapar Yuga contemporary to Lord Krishan.The business community of today must learn Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) from Maharaja Agarsen as a necessary and sufficient condition for inclusive growth which means to care for the cared -less (not care less) and use of the used- less (not use less) manpower.
The amended Companies Act 2013 made the provision of 2 percent of the average net profit (with a rider of Rs 5 crore or more profit in the past three years) of the companies be spent on CSR. They are required to spend on CSR with self-regulation, transparency and compliance may be acceptable to the stakeholders. But, let them feel motivated from Maharaja Agarsen who was a strong protagonist of spending 25 percent of the incomes on the welfare of living beings in the society. He also made a case for 25 percent savings for future which is necessary and sufficient condition for coping up the financial crisis of any kind as in present times when quality of life is becoming expensive with inflation .
We should respect humanity without prejudice to anyone on considerations of caste, community, wealth, occupation and religion. Farming community producing food grains were respected in his kingdom. The service of cow was the best service. To provide relief to one and all was the honest goal for him. The marvellous tradition of giving one coin and brick to any new comer for starting new business to earn a living is worth replicating in present times of unemployment and under employment. He never discriminated against anyone and the subjects were very pleased with the way he conducted himself. The Government of India issued a postage stamp in honour of Maharaja Agarsen in 1976.
An icon of non-violence , messenger of peace, Maharaja Agarsen was an embodiment of sacrifice, compassion, non-violence, peace, progress , prosperity and a true socialist. He was the eldest son. of King Ballabh of Pratapnagar during the last stages of Dvaapar Yug. According to current calendar the birth of Maharaj Agrasen took place about 5190 years ago. King Ballabh was a Suryavamshi (lineage from the Sun). Even when he was very young, Prince Agarsen was very well known for his compassion.
For the prosperity, progress and peace of the people, Maharaja Agarsen performed many yagnas ( sacrifice). In those days, performing a yagna was a symbol of prosperity. During one such yagna, Maharaja Agarsen noticed that a horse that had been brought to be sacrificed was trying hard to get away from the sacrificial altar. Seeing this Maharaja Agarsen was filled with pity and then thought as to what prosperity can be achieved by sacrificing mute animals. It is said that, the way Maharaja Agarsen used to deal with business problems was really great. And this is the reason why King Akbar had two Agarwal in his group of ministers. One was Todarmal, who introduced the land systems and another one was Madhushai who have made us proud in history.
We need to learn from his memorable life of compassion with sermons of cooperation and coexistence in present world of competition which is both healthy as well as unhealthy. Even if weak we have to become unique to survive in the rat race of the survival of the fittest in present times. Let the business community of present era feel motivated for CSR from Maharaja Agarsen. There is a strong case for income tax exemption for the expenditure on increased domain of CSR including sports and youth development in Bhart to be made Swarnim towards 2047.
- The writer is Former Vice- Chancellor known as Founder Needonomics School of Thought superannuated from Department of Economics Kurukshetra University