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N.R.Narayana Murthy

N.R.Narayana Murthy

Chairman Emeritus, Infosys

Co-founder and Chairman Emeritus of Infosys. An eminent Indian industrialist, Narayana Murthy has been named as the Father of the Indian IT Sector by TIME Magazine. He has been honoured with the Padma Vibhushan and the Padma Shri.

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Infosys founder N.R. Narayana Murthy has said that maintaining idealism, confidence, hope, energy and enthusiasm of every Indian is mandatory if we have to make good on the dreams of the founding fathers of the country. He said the country had been progressing in economy, human resources and other aspects like never before. “There is also another India that worries us. About 350 million people cannot read or write, about 200 million do not have access to safe drinking water and about 750 million Indians do not have access to sanitation. We rank high in corruption and our record in primary and higher education is pathetic,” Mr. Murthy said. “We have created an environment where bright, idealistic and confident youngsters who are ready to take on the world in their twenties become despondent and self-seeking unhappy individuals by the time they reach their 40s,” he added “However, there is hope today for us to solve these problems. For the first time in 300 years, we have an economic environment that engenders confidence that we can overcome our poverty and create a better future for every India. But such a transformation will not be easy,” he added. Referring to the movie Chak De India, Mr. Murthy said it had provided the recipe for bringing glory to India and added: “It is very simple to enunciate, identify as Indian and rise above the affiliations of States, religion and caste and work aggressively ...

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If you observe the economic history of this world in the last 50 years when computers started playing a bigger role, you can realise that those countries that absorb technology more enthusiastically, have reduced their unemployment much more than those which did not embrace technology. What technology does is it provides an opportunity for human beings to move from drudgery tasks to tasks that require more and more human touch.

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Emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning will not render people jobless in the future, but rather create more opportunities for humans, Infosys co-founder NR Narayana Murthy said here. The renowned IT industrialist noted that technology provides an opportunity for people to move from drudgery to tasks that require more human touch. “AI definitely is a very important topical area of computer sciences. AI, machine learning, big data analytics, Internet of Things (IoT), these are all areas which are likely to make the lives of human beings even more comfortable,” Mr Murthy told news agency Press Trust of India. Giving the example of the US, the UK, and Japan, which embraced technology early on, he noted that these countries have been able to reduce unemployment rates to single digits. According to a report by the World Economic Forum (WEF), the rapid evolution of machines and algorithms in the workplace could create 133 million new roles in place of 75 million that will be displaced by 2022. “If you observe the economic history of this world in the last 50 years when computers started playing a bigger role, you can realise that those countries that absorb technology more enthusiastically, have reduced their unemployment much more than those which did not embrace technology,” Mr Murthy said.

Source: www.ndtv.com
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In order to improve the quality of research in the country, India needs to create an environment conducive for qualified, bright women researchers to continue their pursuit in the field of science, said NR Narayana Murthy, co-founder of IT conglomerate Infosys today. A report released by the firm Clarivate Analytics showed that only 10 Indians figure among the world’s top 4,000 highly-cited researchers (HCR), with only one woman from India featuring in the list topped by the US. “Whenever I have gone for a convocation address in any university or IITs in the country, I find that the percentage of gold medals won by women is generally much higher than those won by men,” said Murthy. He added that he has “no doubt” on the fact that more women researchers will help improve the quality of research in India. “Therefore, we have to create an environment where it is easy for our women researchers to continue their pursuit even after they get married, and even after they have children,” the renowned IT industrialist said. However, Murthy acknowledged that it was a social issue and not so much the problem of the research institutes. “In our society, we have to create mechanisms whereby qualified, bright women researchers have no hindrance at all to continue their research focus,” he said ahead of the Infosys Prize ceremony here on Saturday. The Infosys Prize is an annual award given ...

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I believe that automation will create big opportunities for IT services because automation is achieved only by developing software robots that automate business processes. That is the strength of the Indian IT software industry. The future of the BPO sector is not as bright as we would like it to be. Automation is likely to take over the jobs in the BPO sector.

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India accounts for a small fraction of revenue for most foreign companies. At this early stage of our economic development, we should be flexible, not create any further barriers, and remove every impediment to foreign and domestic companies. Else, foreign companies will simply shun India.

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The problem today, in India, is the lack of good quality independent directors resulting in governance deficits even in well-known companies. One way to solve this is to start an Institute of Custodians to assess the quality of candidates wanting to be independent directors and, if found satisfactory, to train them to become competent independent directors of listed companies. They have to pass a written examination and an oral examination. No listed company should be allowed to appoint a person as an independent director without a valid certificate from the Institute. In case such a certified board member is party to a governance deficit, the institute should have the power to claw back the certification.

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Shareholders own the company. The board of directors represents the shareholders. The shareholders appoint directors for a certain period to supervise the agent (management) on behalf of the shareholders. The board operates at the pleasure of the shareholders. Whether a shareholder has one share or a billion shares, the board has the same obligation to provide unvarnished, truthful answers with full transparency to the questions of that shareholder on any issue. In fact, protecting the rights of minority shareholders is an important duty of every board. The primary functions of board governance include reviewing, critiquing and revising the strategy presented by the management; ensuring that the management has clear KPIs (key performance indicators) and fair performance-based compensation after consulting some key, knowledgeable shareholders (as happens in the case of well-governed companies in the West) and after debating, discussing and obtaining the approval of shareholders.

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If I am not wrong, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) rule is that the founder of a listed company is considered a promoter as long as his shareholding in the company does not go below 1% of the outstanding shares of the company. Such a founder-promoter is considered an insider. The promoter has to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) like any other senior officer or any member of the board of a listed company. He has the same privileged access to information (as a member of the board or anybody who has signed the NDA in the company), including financial information, and should have the same liability as a member of the board. However, Sebi has not clarified whether this assumption of mine is correct or not and has also not provided the details of the rights and liabilities of promoters. Some boards of companies registered in India but listed both in India and the US believe that a promoter cannot be an insider since they hold the view that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules prevail over Sebi rules. My preference is that if a company is registered in India, is listed both on an Indian exchange and a US exchange, and the majority shares (like 80%) are listed on an Indian exchange, then the rules of Sebi should take precedence over the US SEC rules. It is desirable that Sebi clarifies this issue.

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I am not in favour of this. It will take shareholder democracy even farther away from the principles of a democracy. I understand why some people may want this. Selling a part of your stake in the company to raise cash for yourself and still wanting to retain control is like having your cake and eating it. I am not sure this is a good idea if we want capitalism to grow in India.