India needs to focus on care infra for kids and seniors: Indra Nooyi


Indra Nooyi, the former chief executive of Pepsi, on Friday warned that India’s GDP will suffer if it does not give sufficient attention to care infrastructure for kids and senior citizens.

India-born Nooyi also said that the country has ”phenomenal” systems like that of Anganwadis, but the same are ”not a great place right now” and need a revival.

She said talent is the most prized resource for a company and a country, and the race for the same is going to get more competitive.

India has strengths like demographic dividend, English-speaking population and technologically-oriented people and the “big question” is how does the country keep them engaged at work and at the same ensure that the population is renewed as the young people start families, Nooyi said, speaking at the annual NTLF event.

“Without childcare facilities for the children or senior care facilities for the adults, how are we going to carry on? We can’t exclude large swathes of society from working and the consequences are that the GDP growth is going to slow down,” she warned.

Nooyi said families are “fragile” systems and if something happens to anyone in it, there will be economic trouble because sufficient money is not set aside and in such a scenario, the obvious impact will be delayed child births which is not good for the society.

She said the COVID-19 pandemic has helped by allowing flexibility at work for employees, but that is for those working out of offices but made it clear that the essential workers which are 70 per cent of the workforce do not have such privileges and will have to be taken care of.

Nooyi also said that organisations and businesses do not support women in executive positions as also in areas like essential workers, nursing or caregivers.

“We should stop talking about hybrid, flexible workplaces because after all that applies to all offices goers, but 70% of the workers are essentially hourly workers, caregivers, and others and they have no flexibility. We have to think of better childcare options,” she said.

Meanwhile, Infosys co-founder and chairman Nandan Nilekani, who also spoke at the same event, said account aggregator framework to be introduced by RBI and open network for digital commerce (ONDC) will be as big gamechangers as the Aadhar project.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)



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