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Narayana Murthy Urges Reform in Education Institutions: ‘Look at MIT, Harvard, Stanford’

Infosys founder NR Narayana Murthy said that there is an urgent need to revamp of “archaic rules” which stop the contribution of shares by entrepreneurs to academic institutions. Entrepreneurs have shares rather than ample capital in their startups’ early stages, he said on the sidelines of Infosys Science Foundation’s media briefing.

“We have to change some of the archaic rules. For example, even today, an entrepreneur cannot donate shares,” he said as he was asked whether enough is being done by the alumni and the industry for academic institutions.

Infosys co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan said, “More is needed… Look at the US universities, MIT, Harvard, Stanford, etc. They get endowments in billions of dollars. Today, our institutions primarily depend on government funding, I would like to see equal funding, I want to see more industry participation.”

Talking about his wife Sudha Murthy’s 1995 attempt to donate ₹4.5 crore to the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, Narayana Murthy said that the amount could have been valued at ₹3,000 crore as of today if the rules been different.

“Lots of innovations are taking place in the corporate world, they are needed even in academic institutions,” he said. He also talked about the time when he wanted to donate shares to his alma mater IIT Kanpur in the late 1990s. He said, “That time none of us had any money, only thing we had was shares. They wanted us to give only money, not shares. If only they had accepted shares, if they had kept it.”

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