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Take charge, Premji tells students

Staff Reporter

Wipro chief shares some pearls of wisdom at the IIT Delhi Convocation "... enjoy winning. But don't let it go to your head"



SOME SUCCESS TIPS: Wipro Chairman Azim Premji addressing Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi students during the 37th Convocation of the Institute on Saturday. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt

NEW DELHI: It was a chance for students to get a few lessons of life from a man who is an icon for success in this country. The chief guest at the 37th Convocation of the Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi on Saturday, Wipro Chairman Azim Premji, shared the experiences of his career with the students.

Pointing out that it was important for them to take their responsibilities seriously, Mr. Premji said the world today was very different from when he began his career. "It was in the late 1960s and India still depended on other countries for something as basic as food. Recently someone told me that visitors then came to see what they could do for India. Now they come to see what India can do for them. There is a significant difference," he added.

Mr. Premji said it was important for students not to get tempted to slow down. "Business is getting more competitive now and there is an overdrive. Don't lose your pace. It is also important that you remember your responsibility in contributing to society," he asserted.

Stating that India has many challenges in front in the areas of health, hygiene and education, Mr. Premji said these were opportunities in terms of business and social sector. "Lesson number one is take charge. This was the first thought that came to me when over decade ago I stepped into Wipro factory at Amalner. Many people advised me to take a nice cushy job rather than face the challenges of running a hydrogenated oil business, which was not making money. Looking back, I am glad I decided to take charge instead. Essentially, leadership begins from within. It is a small voice that tells you where to go when you feel lost," he said.

Stating that nothing succeeds like failure, Mr. Premji asserted that you win some and lose some. "You must enjoy winning. But don't let it go to your head," he said.

The Institute awarded 1,285 degrees this year of which 134 were doctorates. It also recognised the contribution of students who have gone ahead and done the institute proud by their activities. Thirty-two alumni have received the award so far. The award this year was conferred on Renu Malhotra, a professor at the University of Arizona's Department of Planetary Sciences and the Lunar Planetary Laboratory. Prof. Malhotra has revolutionised the field of planetary science and has the rare honour of having an asteroid 6698 named after her. The Managing Director of Hutchinson Essar, Asim Ghosh, was also conferred the award for his outstanding contribution to the telecom sector. Navin Chaddha, one of the youngest people to have got it, was given the award in absentia.

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