Narayana Murthy Shares 4 Tips To Bring Paradigm Shift in India's Business Ethos The co-founder of Infosys was talking to Nikhil Kamath, co-founder of Zerodha, during a fireside chat at the Bengaluru Tech Summit

By S Shanthi

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The key to alleviating poverty in any country lies in capitalism, built on the twin pillars of a free market and entrepreneurship, said Narayana Murthy, co-founder of Infosys, while talking to Nikhil Kamath, co-founder of Zerodha, during a fireside chat at the Bengaluru Tech Summit. He also spoke about many key issues that need to be addressed to bring a paradigm shift in India's business ethos.

Entrepreneurs should be evangelists of capitalism

When asked about what led to his belief in the efficacy of capitalism for poverty alleviation, Murthy spoke about the twin pillars of free market and entrepreneurship. "I believe that capitalism based on the twin pillars of free market and entrepreneurship is the only solution for any country to solve the problem of poverty. There are no other 'isms'. What you need is free markets where the government doesn't interfere with entrepreneurship, where the government goes out of its way to encourage entrepreneurs to run their enterprises legally and ethically, so government becomes a fair and transparent regulator," he said. Murthy also asked entrepreneurs to recognize their role as evangelists of capitalism.

They should bring fairness and transparency

"Entrepreneurs have to bring fairness, transparency and accountability to running their enterprises. They have to ensure that when they take decisions they have to look at whether the poorest or lowest level employee in the company is made better by the decision they take. They have to pay their taxes honestly. They have to contribute a certain percentage of their profits for the betterment of society. They have to become an integral part of the society to lift the society to a higher level. That's what I term compassionate capitalism," he said.

Swift decision-making in governance issues

Murthy insisted on the importance of making quick decisions in matters related to governance. Talking particularly about making Bengaluru even more successful than it is, the Infosys co-founder said that the city needs robust infrastructure to be built with a sense of alacrity. He also added that people in the infrastructure industry should work three shifts to ensure public development projects like the metro are built on priority. "We have been trying to complete the Electronics City metro, and the metro from other parts of the city. All these have to be delivered on priority. The people in that infrastructure industry must work three shifts. They should not work just one shift. Come at 11 am, 10 fellows sitting there, and they will go at 5 pm," Murthy said.

Murthy said that political parties, intellectuals, academicians and corporate leaders should come together to think of practical solutions that can push up foreign direct investments.

Provide total freedom to start English medium schools

Murthy said that the first task of a good public governance system for Bengaluru to become even stronger is that we have to provide total freedom to start English medium schools. "Whether we like it or not," he said while adding, "I have not come across anybody who is very important in any area who sends his children to Kannada medium schools."

He also said that when the government provides subsidies it should ensure that the receiver provides something in return for the improvement of the society. "If you are providing free electricity, tell them we want to see the percentage of attendance in schools going up by say 20%. There should be a contribution of citizens also to make our society better. While I'm not against free services, I think we should expect something in return from the receivers so that they take a slightly bigger responsibility to make their own future generation better," he said.

S Shanthi

Senior Assistant Editor

Shanthi specializes in writing sector-specific trends, interviews and startup profiles. She has worked as a feature writer for over a decade in several print and digital media companies. 


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