Sudha Murthy is the chairperson of the Infosys Foundation and an Indian educator, author, and philanthropist. She is married to N. R. Narayana Murthy, the co-founder of Infosys. After challenging TELCO's (now Tata Motors') gender bias, she became the company's first female engineer. She has published several books in Kannada, English, and Marathi, the majority of which are based on her personal and social experiences. She has also been active in a number of social causes, including education, health care, rural development, and women's empowerment. She has received numerous honors and awards for her work, including the Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, R.K. Narayan Award, and the Attimabbe Award.
Sudha Murthy's childhood was characterized by simplicity, compassion, and a desire to learn. She was born in Shiggaon, Karnataka, India, on August 19, 1950, into a middle-class family that instilled in her strong values of humility and empathy for others. Sudha showed an early interest in books and education, frequently immersing herself in the world of literature. Her parents encouraged her to pursue her love of learning and supported her academic endeavors.
Sudha Murthy's determination and intellectual curiosity led her to excel academically despite societal norms that were not always supportive of girls' education. She went on to study engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology, which was an unusual choice for a woman at the time. Sudha developed a strong empathy for the less fortunate and a desire to positively contribute to society throughout her childhood and early years.
Her early experiences as a compassionate and driven person laid the groundwork for her successful career as a social worker, author, and philanthropist. Sudha Murthy's childhood lessons of humility, kindness, and a love of learning live on in her work, inspiring others to make a difference in the lives of those in need and leaving a lasting impact on society.
Sudha Murthy is a highly educated and accomplished woman with a background in engineering and computer science. She received a gold medal for her outstanding academic performance at B.V.B College of Engineering in Hubli, where she earned her BE in Electrical Engineering. She then earned her ME in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore in 1974, and she later received a gold medal from the then-chief minister of Karnataka for passing both final exams. She is also an honorary doctorate recipient from the Visvesvaraya Institute of Advanced Technology. After challenging TELCO's (now Tata Motors') gender bias, she became the company's first female engineer. She was also a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge and Cornell University.
Sudha Murthy received a gold medal for her outstanding academic performance at B.V.B College of Engineering in Hubli, where she earned her BE in Electrical Engineering. She then earned her ME in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore in 1974, and she later received a gold medal from the then-chief minister of Karnataka for passing both final exams. She is also an honorary doctorate recipient from the Visvesvaraya Institute of Advanced Technology. After challenging TELCO's (now Tata Motors') gender bias, she became the company's first female engineer. She sent a postcard to TELCO's chairman, J.R.D. Tata, complaining about gender discrimination in the hiring process. She was then called in for a special interview and hired. She worked as a development engineer designing various types of cranes in Pune, Mumbai, and Jamshedpur.
She also spent seven years (1974-1981) as a senior system analyst with the Walchand Group of Industries in Pune. Her husband, Narayana Murthy, began his career as a research assistant at IIM Ahmedabad. When they decided to relocate to Mumbai in 1981, Narayana shared his dream of establishing a software company that would be the country's largest venture in the technology industry. Sudha assisted Narayana Murthy in any way she could and also shared Rs. 10,000, her sole savings. In those days, she was the most steadfast supporter of Infosys and Narayana Murthy's career.
Both Sudha Murthy and Narayana Murthy worked for Infosys for a few years, but they sacrificed their family life. Sudha left Infosys in 1996 to care for their children, Akshata and Rohan. She also wished to pursue her interests in writing and social work. She was appointed chairperson of the Infosys Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the welfare of society's underprivileged. She has been active in a variety of social causes, including education, health care, rural development, and women's empowerment. She has established several orphanages, participated in rural development efforts, supported the movement to provide computer and library facilities in all Karnataka government schools, and established the Murty Classical Library of India at Harvard University.
She has also been a member of the Gates Foundation's public health initiatives and has contributed to relief efforts during natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, and cyclones. She has traveled to remote areas of India and abroad to understand people's problems and to provide solutions. She has also advocated for ethical values and good corporate governance.
Sudha Murthy is also a prolific writer, having published several books in Kannada, English, and Marathi, the majority of which are based on her personal and social experiences. She began writing at the age of 25 and has since published over 20 books. How I Taught My Grandmother to Read, Wise and Otherwise, Dollar Bahu, Mahashweta, The Mother I Never Knew, The Serpent's Revenge, Three Thousand Stitches, and The Magic Drum are among her best-selling books. Her books have been translated into several languages and adapted into films and television series.
She writes in a straightforward and clear style that appeals to both children and adults. Her stories reflect her values, beliefs, and life perspectives. She is inspired by her own experiences as well as the people she meets through her social work. She also contributes columns to newspapers and magazines on a variety of topics including education, culture, ethics, and spirituality.
"Life is an exam where the syllabus is unknown and question papers are not set. Nor are there model answer papers." ~ Sudha Murthy
"We can give our children only two things in life which are essential. Strong roots and powerful wings. Then they may fly anywhere and live independently." ~ Sudha Murthy
"Vision without action is merely a dream; action without vision is merely passing time; but vision and action together can change the world." ~ Sudha Murthy
"Be dependent on yourself, and know that courage has to be born within you. It takes time but you have to work for it." "When a doctor makes a mistake, a person goes six feet below the ground. When a judge makes a mistake, a person is hung six feet above the ground. But when a teacher makes a mistake, the entire batch of students is destroyed. Don’t ever look down on teachers." ~ Sudha Murthy
"There is a difference between loneliness and solitude. Loneliness is boring, whereas in solitude you can inspect and examine your deeds and your thoughts." ~ Sudha Murthy
Sudha Murthy is an exemplary example of a woman who has achieved success in a variety of fields. She has achieved success as an engineer, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and author. She has made a positive impact on society by combining her education, skills, experience, passion, and vision. She has also served as an inspiration to other women who want to follow their dreams and make a difference in the world.
"A fire cannot be extinguished with another fire. It is the only water that can make a difference." ~ Sudha Murthy
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