CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development (CESD), nurtures companies with a view to enabling them to compete, expand opportunity and excel in the current dynamic business environments. With this objective, the Centre continues to campaign for the adoption of sustainable business practices by Indian companies.

Instituted in 2006, the CII-ITC Sustainability Awards set out to recognise and reward excellence in companies which are seeking ways to be more sustainable and inclusive in their activities. The Awards are a part of the continued efforts of the Centre to create awareness on sustainability practices and to create capacities in business.

The CII-ITC Sustainability Awards are the only third party assured awards, in terms of technology, governance, methodology and process. Uniquely based on the EFQM Excellence Framework, the Awards are designed for those who strive effortlessly to make sustainability their business. Assessment is based on around 250 indicators which cover 15 aspects of sustainability. The assessment has been made more comprehensive to include aspects such as Business Ethics, Employee Development, Human Rights and Biodiversity. Companies can apply in the categories of Corporate excellence and Domain excellence in Environment Management, Corporate Social Responsibility and Biodiversity.

A Feedback report is provided to the applicants in two phases. For companies that do not qualify for site visits, feedback reports are provided a­fter desk assessments are over and for companies that qualify for site visits, feedback reports are provided after the end of the Awards cycle.

In 15 years of recognising sustainable businesses, the CII-ITC Sustainability Awards have become a symbol of credibility and pride for companies. Cumulatively, 986 applied of which 326 have been recognised. Limited number of applications are accepted to maintain higher standards of excellence.

The Awards ceremony is a platform through which winners are recognised in the presence of an august gathering. The ceremony is well attended by CEOs of companies, assessors who are a part of the assessment process as well as distinguished guests from industry. Assessors who have been a part of the assessment process are also recognized under various categories.

This year, for the 15th CII-ITC Sustainability Awards, 33 applicants underwent a rigorous evaluation process that included virtual on-site assessment by a peer team of CII-certified sustainability assessors, who spent approximately 1,000 man-hours per application over a period of six months. The final shortlist of winning applicants was validated by a pre-eminent jury comprising leaders from government, civil society and academia.

There were 22 winners in all. Shri Anurag Thakur, Minister of State for Corporate Affairs and Finance, and Mr Sanjiv Puri, Chairman and MD, ITC Ltd recognised the winners for Excellence in Sustainable Business at a special virtual presentation of CII-ITC Sustainability Awards on 18 December 2020.

One  company received Outstanding Accomplishment and six companies received Commendation for Significant Achievement in Corporate Excellence; two companies recognised for Excellence in Environment Management; three take home Commendation for Significant Achievement in Environment Management; five companies got Excellence in Corporate Social Responsibility; four awarded Commendation for Significant Achievement in Corporate Social Responsibility; and one company won for Excellence in Biodiversity.

List of Award Winners of 15th CII-ITC Sustainability Awards

Corporate Excellence

Outstanding Accomplishment – Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Ltd.

Commendation for Significant Achievement

  • Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd.
  • NTPC Ltd.
  • Tata AutoComp GY Batteries Pvt. Ltd.
  • Genpact India Pvt. Ltd.
  • Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Ltd.
  • Hindustan Zinc Ltd.

Domain Excellence

Environment Management


  • Kings International Ltd.
  • Nestlé India Ltd.

Commendation for Significant Achievement

  • Avaada Energy Pvt. Ltd.; Avaada Solar Energy Pvt. Ltd.
  • Harihar Polyfibers, Harihar Grasim Industries Ltd.
  • JSW Cement Ltd.; Nandyal Works

Corporate Social Responsibility


  • Avaada Energy Pvt. Ltd.; Avaada Solar Energy Pvt. Ltd.
  • Cairn Oil & Gas, Vedanta Ltd
  • Sterlite Technologies Ltd
  • Schneider Electric IT Business India Pvt. Ltd
  • NTPC Ltd

Commendation for Significant Achievement

  • Bharat Aluminium Co. Ltd.
  • The Ramco Cements Ltd.; Alathiyur Works
  • THDC India Ltd.
  • DP World



  • Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Ltd.

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