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5 June 2013, Financial Times

Guest post: the return of India’s patriarchs

The Financial Times republished Gateway House's Executive Director Manjeet Kripalani's article on the return of N. Narayanamurthy to Infosys. She analyses the future of the firm with the homecoming of N. Narayanamurthy as its Executive Chairman.

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In his return to the chief’s chair to revive the premier Indian information technology giant Infosys Technologies which he co-founded, N Narayanamurthy is following a well-worked tradition in the corporate world. This return, however, has a new twist: Murthy will be accompanied into the executive suite by his 30-year old computer scientist son, Rohan.

A son working in his father’s office – business or political – is the norm in India. Except that Infosys is a globally-recognized, publicly-listed company. The similarity to Sonia Gandhi coming in to ‘save’ and lead the Congress Party and later inducting her son Rahul Gandhi as party vice-president has not been lost on the public. And so a fury of indignation has swept across the country from those who saw Murthy as the icon of good governance and professionalism, a bulwark against the nepotism and crony capitalism that has seized Indian politics and even cricket, today. It’s India’s most perverse moment yet: instead of politics taking its cue from professional business, business is taking its cue from politics and reinforcing family ties.


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