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Public Lectures
Sudha Murty (Founder of Infosys Foundation, Author, Philanthropist, Chairperson of Murty Trust and Rajya Sabha MP)
Date & Time
18 June 2024, 15:45 to 16:45
Ramanujan Lecture Hall, ICTS

About the speaker:

Mrs. Murty was born on August 19, 1950, in Shiggaon, North Karnataka. She grew up in a close-knit family with her parents and three siblings. In 1972, Mrs. Murty completed her engineering in Electronics & Electrical Engineering from B.V.B College of Engineering & Technology, Hubli, and in 1974, she completed her masters in computer science from IISc, Bangalore. She was the first woman engineer to be hired at TELCO (now Tata Motors) and worked there for eight long years.

Mrs. Murty’s story of contributing towards the birth of Infosys in 1981 is well-known. Her unwavering support, dedication, sharp acumen, and decisive leadership qualities played an important role in establishing Infosys Foundation. During her twenty-five-years long tenure as the Founder and Chairperson of the Foundation, she has supported multiple projects across India in the fields of healthcare, education, art & culture, women’s empowerment, and public hygiene. Her foremost contribution towards women's empowerment has been rehabilitation of Devadasi community. The initiative helped more than three thousand Devadasis, with a substitute livelihood and economic independence. She has also supported relief efforts during sixteen natural disasters, established libraries in more than seventy thousand schools of Karnataka, built fifteen thousand toilets, and five dormitories.

During her tenure as Chairperson of Infosys Foundation, Mrs. Murty started a unique competition for social entrepreneurship called  ‘Avishkar Dil Se’. It was based on scientific research which could be transformed into a social enterprise, benefiting the society at large. Many organisations were recognized in this process and one of them was Inali Foundation managed by Mr. Prashant Gade. They cater to supply of artificial limbs, which has till now offered services to thousands of helpless people.

The ‘Avishkar Dil Se’ is successfully running for 3rd year.

Coming from a family with a versatile educational background, Smt. Sudha Murty developed a reading habit at an early age. She is a prolific writer and has penned several bestselling books across genres - from children’s books to short stories, novels, technical books, and travelogues. She mainly writes in English and Kannada, but her books have been translated into all the major Indian languages and have sold more than 60 lakh copies around the country. Several of her books have also been translated into Italian and Arabic. Among her most famous titles are Grandmother’s Bag of Stories, Gently Falls the Bakula, Gopi Diaries, Three Thousand Stitches, and Wise and Otherwise. With simple and accessible language, Smt. Sudha Murty’s stories inspire readers young and old. Her writings are replete with values of compassion and kindness, in keeping with our culture and heritage. Her non-fiction stories are based on her time at the Infosys Foundation where she worked with people from all walks of life. As of date, Smt. Sudha Murty has nearly 290 titles on her list of published books.

Over the years, her efforts have been recognized with many prestigious awards including the Padma Bhushan & Padma Shri from the Government of India in 2023 & 2006 respectively, Sahitya Academy Awards (for three titles) in 2023, the R.K. Narayan Award for Literature in 2006 & the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Award in 2020. She was also awarded the Rajyotsava and Attimabbe award for excellence in Kannada literature from the Government of Karnataka in 2000 and 2012. She has been serving on Boards of a few Universities and Government committees. She has also received more than fifteen honorary doctorates from Universities across India, including IIT Kanpur.

The latest recognition she has received is having being nominated as Member of Parliment by the Honourable President of India, which she deems as a larger platform to serve our country.


This lecture is part of the program "Summer School for Women in Mathematics and Statistics".