It was an evening to pay tributes to India and its entrepreneurs, when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday released the maiden book authored by Infosys Technologies co-founder N R Narayana Murthy, as well known for his philanthropic endeavours as for his leadership skills.
And the prime minister was full of praise for Murthy's enterprise, vision and values as he released the book entitled "A Better India, A Better World" at Panchvati conference hall at his official residence.
“Narayana Murthy is a role model for millions of Indians,” Manmohan Singh said about the co-founder of one of the better-known and well-respected information technology companies of India.
“An iconic figure in the country, he is widely respected and looked up to not only for his business leadership but also for his ethics and personal conduct. He represents the face of the new, resurgent India to the world.”
The prime minister, who had termed the Satyam scam a "blot" on India's corporate governance, also dwelt on the need for entrepreneurs to rise above personal gains, profits and think about their larger role in the country and the world at large.
"Greed beyond a point can be extremely upsetting and even hamper growth," the prime minister said.
Murthy on his part said the three pillars for development today were values, aspirational transformation and removal of elitist approach to issues. These, he said, had taken over the previous three pillars, namely, capital, technology and natural resources.
"For the first time in 300 years, India has seen a resurgence of its calibre," Murthy said, adding it was now time to take the fruits of growth and wealth creation to the masses.
The book is a collection of Murthy's speeches over the years. His wife, Sudha, who is chairperson of the philanthropic initiative of his group called Infosys Foundation, is also an accomplished writer, especially known for children's books.
In his book, published by Penguin, Murthy seeks to show that a society that works for the welfare of the most number of people, based on the principle of let everyone experience joy, must focus on two simple things: Values and good leadership.
Drawing on the remarkable story of Infosys and the lessons learnt from the two decades of post-reform India, he also lays down the ground rules that must be followed if future generations are to inherit a truly progressive nation.
The book is more of a manifesto for the youth, whom the 62-year-old entrepreneur sees as architects of the future, as also compelling arguments on why a better India holds the key to a better world.
It also seeks answers on how to bridge India's great divide where it has been growing at over 8.5 percent over the past five years and made great strides in industry, entrepreneurship and technology, but still finds 300 million of its citizens prey to hunger, illiteracy and disease.
Murthy, who now serves as the chief mentor of his company, had co-founded it in 1981 with all of $250, and has today made it into a $4 billion global IT leader with 103,000 employees and a footprint in over 50 countries.
He has a bachelor's and a master's in electrical engineering from the University of Mysore and the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur and has been making significant philanthropic contributions to his alma maters.
Thanks to his pioneering work, he has also been winner of several prestigious awards in India and abroad, including the country's second-highest civilian award, the Padma Vibhushan.