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Easy To Drape Ourselves In National Flag And About ‘Mera Bharat Mahaan’, Difficult To Practice Values: Infosys Co-Founder Narayan Murthy

Murthy said patriotism implies working for the country, putting its interests ahead of one’s interests.

Infosys co-founder NR Narayana Murthy on Thursday, August 22, criticised hypernationalism.

Addressing the fourth convocation function of the Madan Mohan Malaviya University of Technology (MMMUT) in Gorakhpur, Murthy said, “It is easy to drape ourselves in our national flag and shout ‘Mera Bharat Mahaan’ and ‘Jai Ho’, but it is difficult to practice the values. Patriotism means what will bring the best out of every citizen.”

Murthy said patriotism implies working for the country, putting its interests ahead of one’s interests, addressing the gathering that comprised Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath besides MMMUT Vice-Chancellor Sri Niwas Singh, dozens of university professors and hundreds of students. “We have to put the interest of our nation ahead of our personal interests, avoiding our egos and biases,” he said.

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Patriotism also means working with a zeal for the betterment of the society, he said, adding, “We have to constantly compare ourselves with countries better than us and learn from them. We have to shun apathy and become proactive in solving the problems of our society rather than expecting others to do it.”

While speaking favourably of the economy, Murthy also reminded of a “parallel India”, “steeped into poverty, illiteracy, ill-health and malnutrition” and co-existing with a developed one. He emphasised upon the government’s obligation to create an entrepreneur-friendly business environment to tackle the sickness.

“We have another India steeped in deep poverty, illiteracy, ill-health and malnutrition. We have the largest mass of illiterates in the world. About 350 million Indians cannot read or write. More than 200 million Indians do not have access to safe drinking water. About 750 million Indians do not have access to sanitation facilities. We have consistently been among the lowly-ranked nations in the HDI (Human Development Index),” said Murthy.

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“Our governments have to become more citizen-friendly and remove all obstacles to entrepreneurs to create a larger and larger number of jobs. Our economic policies have to be less populist and more based on expertise. We have to shun jingoism,” he added.

“If we try hard, we can wipe the tears off the eyes of the poorest of the poor child, as Mahatma Gandhi wanted,” said Murthy.

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