Whatever his bio-data says – son of a Mysore school teacher; a product of Mysore University - Mr N R Narayana Murthy doesn’t belong here. So it would seem, judging by our deadpan response to this victim of a politically motivated smear campaign. We wouldn’t have, would we, let this go unchallenged, if Mysore and its people count Mr Murthy as one of our own.
Far from speaking up for the Infosys founder, Mysore is mum. What I can hear is the ‘deafening silence’ on the part of our social activist groups, sangha, parishat, and association of citizens, both ‘informed’ and ‘concerned’. A statement of support or a solidarity resolution would have been a socially gracious gesture. Admittedly, Mr Narayana Murthy or Infosys does not need our flag-waving support. But we would have made him feel good by letting him know that we, in Mysore, are with him.
Meanwhile I find the ‘Touchstone’ column in ‘The New Indian Express’ has put Mr Murthy’s case in perspective.
“Whatever he has done for his company or the community had the hallmark of transparency. Yet a senior politician had the gumption to call him names and treat him as if he were a small-time builder and real estate agent”.
A notable aspect is that the columnist, T Bhanu, doesn’t name the politician even once. Which I think is smart. Why dignify unwarranted accusations by naming the accuser.
“Narayana Murthy is a rich man by any yardstick…..he doesn’t have to buy government and agricultural land, convert it in the name of software development, and later on build flats and villas and realize the proceeds….
“…..And if the Karnataka government is not willing, there are other states ready to invite him with open arms”.
Related item: ‘Infosys, a land-grabber?’