The following text was published in the Business Line.
Excerpts from Imagining
“The 1980s was a period that marked the rise of software firms in
We also witnessed how much people favoured working in the Indian public sector at the time. Soon after Infosys moved to
It took one more crisis to change our small steps towards reform in the 1980s into a single leap to the other side.
A flurry of activity
In the 1970s and 1980s, nearly every Indian middle-class home had a cupboard made of wood or steel, with multiple locks and several small drawers. The favoured brand was Godrej Storwel, with its hard-to-pick lock. Most Indian families kept their savings and jewellery here. People avoided putting money in stocks because of the ‘wealth tax’ on such investments. When the ‘wealth tax’ was eliminated, money came out of these cupboards and into
The businesses that emerged at the top of the heap after this struggle were different from the ones before—half of the top ten companies in market capitalization in 1991 had disappeared from the list by the decade’s end. Some of the most prominent entrepreneurs who emerged post-1980, such as Sunil Mittal and Dhirubhai Ambani, had built their firms from scratch, and were a breed far apart from the closed circle, family entrepreneurs of the 1960s and 1970s.
Leading the way
It is also interesting how the Indian government has begun to leverage the strength of India’s IT industry in its foreign relations with other countries, as IT companies have established offices and made acquisitions across the world. In the
Excerpted with permission from Penguin Books India”