The Art Of Giving : Nandan Nilekani & Rohini Nilekani

November 23, 2017 | Philanthropy

“Wealth doesn’t fully belong to us, we are only trustees. Our children knew that. Power to give away is the most important value of money,” inspiring words from Nandan and Rohini Nilekani, days after signing the Giving Pledge. As part of the pledge, they have committed to donate half of their wealth to charity. In their first TV interview together, the billionaire couple talks about why India’s super wealthy need to show they are giving and what money means to them.

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00:07 Chandra: Hello, and welcome to the special show that we are calling The Art of Giving, because we’re in conversation with a billionaire couple of India Inc, for whom wealth has a very different meaning. It’s not about accumulating wealth or passing it on to the next seven generations, but the power to give it away. Nandan Nilekani and Rohini Nilekani, thank you so much for talking to ET Now, days after signing the Giving Pledge as part of which you’ve committed to giving away half of your wealth towards philanthropy. Is this your first television interview together in years, because that itself is momentous for us getting…

00:39 Rohini Nilekani: Probably so. Thank you Chandra for getting us together.

00:42 Chandra: Thank you so much. Rohini, I wanna start with you. You’ve worked in the social sector for about two decades now, at the intersection of state and society and market. You’re well entrenched in this space, so why now, why the Giving Pledge now, considering you’ve already been working in the space on issues such as sanitation and ground water? Is it symbolic? Is it to show publicly that you know you are committed morally to giving back?

01:09 RN: That’s a good question. We’ve been talking about this for a while, but it took me more than Nandan it took me some time to agree to publicly declare this, not because we were not planning to give away so much of our wealth, we always were, but I think it’s not so easy to give away wealth, and I felt that now is the time when Nandan is also giving much more focused time to this, and it requires both of us to be able to do it well. And, also I think we now feel that there is a pipeline into which we can give. It’s no use saying you’ll give and then not know how to give, so we have matured over the years. We know how to give better. We think we can do bigger and more strategic work. So, I think the time was right now, and also we feel that we can learn a lot more from the other pledgers of the Giving Pledge. So, it seemed to us the right time. If Nandan has something to add…

01:58 Chandra: Yeah. So, your own motivation, because it is interesting that you signed the Giving Pledge after coming back to the corporate sector, not while you were away. [chuckle]

02:05 Nandan Nilekani: That was just a coincidence. Because this was in the works now for several months. But I think the point is that as Rohini said, I think what the Giving Pledge has done is that it’s also brought together a set of philanthropists and that creates a forum in which you can share best practices, a forum where you can decide to collaborate, because these are large social issues that you want to collaborate on. So it’s a very effective forum in that sense. So, for us that’s as much valuable as saying that we have just signed the pledge. Giving away was already part of our DNA, it was already there, but this was a way to become part of a group that was looking at the same kind of problems worldwide.

02:48 RN: I also want to add one thing that we keep saying in India that our culture is not to show that we give.

02:54 Chandra: Exactly.

02:55 RN: I feel like that boat has left the dock. I think the signalling is very, very important, that if you’re going to be super wealthy, you’re going to have to be super generous as well. And I think that signalling matters.

03:06 Chandra: Right. I was thinking about this, and I’m sure a lot of billionaires, millionaires who are also parents would wanna know the kind of conversation you had with your children when you decided on this, because in effect you’re giving away half of their inheritance, but were they always coded to believe that, you know what, we are custodians, we are trustees, we’re not owners, we don’t have automatic inheritance. So, just wanna know the conversations that happened around that.

03:32 RN: You said it very well. I think from the beginning, there was no question that… First of all, we don’t fully believe that this wealth belongs to us as such, because however billions Nandan and Infosys may be, I feel a lot of luck, and he’s the first one to admit that, a lot of luck is involved in creating so much wealth. So we feel definitely, at least I feel like we are trustees and the children have known that from the beginning, and because they’re very interested in big ideas and they’re also very interested in philanthropy. I think it was quite easy for us. There was never any question of feeling entitled to all our wealth or anything like thing like that.

04:09 Chandra: Right. Which brings me to my next question. The meaning of money for you, you know what was it initially and how has it changed over the years?

04:16 NN: Well, I think it’s the… For us money is the fact that we can choose to do all these things. It gives us the flexibility to address issues. You don’t have to think about… It’s really the power to give away is the most important value of money, because I think beyond a point, your personal needs are well taken care, so it really doesn’t make any sense beyond a point.

04:38 Chandra: Yeah, in fact, I was just coming to that. When you talk about wealth creation for someone like Rohini Nilekani and Nandan Nilekani, when do you say enough is enough, I have earned enough, I have enough influence and money? Does it happen on its own natural course or how does that happen?

04:54 NN: No, no, that was a stage we reached a long time back. [laughter] So, we don’t think about it. So, I think last 20 years, we’ve been really saying how do we make a difference? It gives us the ability to do what we want, do the right things. So that’s been the main driver. And you know, we began our philanthropy journey, almost 20 years back. As you know, when we had our first ADR, whatever money Rohini got she put into Arghyam, so that was one big contribution. And then, I supported my alma mater IIT Bombay, way back in 1999.

05:29 Chandra: In their hostel.

05:30 NN: And we did many things. So right from that day, we’ve been focusing on…

05:33 RN: And even much earlier when we really were like, we didn’t have any serious money, I was always involved in small giving. I thought that was… That makes life meaningful for me as well. So, you have to do what you can, you have to be part of creating the good society you want to live in. I’ve always believed that. So, it was not a big step, this was not a big step. In fact, for me, not so much for Nandan, but having all this wealth was more difficult than choosing to give… Give it away, honestly.


06:01 Chandra: Right, and I notice in your pledge, you had a very nice verse from the Bhagavad Gita, to really explain the…

06:06 RN: Karmanye Vadhikaraste, yes.

06:07 Chandra: Yeah, which basically underscores the whole aspect of Nishkam Karma. Just to extrapolate that, right? The four values that human beings are supposed to follow. It talks about, “Dharma, Artha, Kama, Moksha.” In your case, it’s almost like you hit the “Artha, Kama” and you went back to “Dharma” to really redefine your moral duty. Was there any trigger in the last year, last two years? I just wanna understand. I know it’s evolved over a long period of time, but any trigger that you felt? After the elections, did you feel like, “this could be a better way of giving back than as an elected representative?” Anything at all…

06:41 NN: No, see what happened is after the elections, we started looking at the education EkStep Project. Now, Rohini had already been working in education for a long time through her work in Pratham Books, Akshara, but we said, “Let’s see, is there a way to use technology to do this at scale,” and that’s what lead us to EkStep and that set us on an exciting journey of, is there a way to think about solving societal problems in a collaborative way using technology that led us to the whole thinking about…

07:09 Chandra: Right. Societal Platforms.

07:11 NN: Societal Platforms and then we realized that Societal Platforms requires massive collaboration, and therefore, it requires philanthropic money, because it requires risk capital to pull it off. And then we said, “The more we look at what’s happening in the Giving Pledge, the discussions they’re having, the collaboration they are having, it’s good to be part of that.” Similarly, as you know we also are part of that co-impact thing. I think, basically we see that philanthropists can collectively have a bigger impact than individually, and therefore, being part of this group gives us the access to that collective impact. And collaboration’s the name of the game and that’s why we think the timing is right.

07:51 Chandra: In fact, I was just coming to that… I believe you coined the term, “Societal Platform.”

07:55 RN: Well, when we were doing Pratham Books, I used to call it a Societal Mission, because there was no way Pratham Books alone, could do anything. It had to be collaborative, open. It had to change the publishing paradigm. It had to bring in markets. We had to go to the state. It had to be a societal thing, not just to do with any one sector and so the team picked that up, because the idea of platforms came from the tech team and the idea of societal came from my experience, and when we joined that it became something a little better than…

08:24 Chandra: Right. In fact, you alluded to the Cambrian Radiation, while making a presentation on this. Do you think this is the answer to really make impact at scale in the social sector, using technology, as a backbone?

08:40 NN: This is one of the ways and this may not apply to all situations. Not every situation can be… But there are a class of challenges that we have, which can use this Societal Platform thinking. And we don’t think Societal Platforms is just about NGOs. We think Societal Platforms is articulating a goal and then saying, “What is the best combination of market forces, government and… ”

09:06 RN: Civil society.

09:07 Chandra: “Civil society? How do they all come together to fix a major thing”?

09:11 RN: And this is, they do what they do best. It’s very hard to build partnerships. They’re trying to find a way where people can seamlessly partner with each other, with less friction. All philanthropists, all over the world are facing the same problem. How do you really… You try to do stuff, but then you don’t seem to go very far and we feel that…

09:29 Chandra: You’re chipping away, but the impact is not good.

09:30 RN: Yeah, but I feel mostly that you have to let various actors and entities do what they do best and facilitate it. It’s not the answer or the solution. We really don’t believe that. We think it’s more of an approach, and we’re testing it out and hoping other people will agree to try it out. There’s no answer there.

09:53 NN: I think it’s about, “How do we get speed, scale, and sustainability?” And over the last decade, whether it’s Rohini’s work on Pratham Books or my work on Aadhaar and then EkStep, we dealt with scale, do it quickly, how do we do it sustainably? We have thought about these issues a lot, and we also realized that you need digital infrastructure to do this, because you need to allow different actors to play together. You have to create a platform where they can all contribute and the other thing we realized is that solving social problems is not about producing one solution and deploying it everywhere. It’s not one size fits all. You need the ability to have every situation to be contextualized by someone who understands local conditions. That’s why a big part of what we do is what’s called, co-creation where different parts of the solutions are co-created locally, by somebody who understands the ground reality.

10:43 RN: So we are able to build, the tech team builds out the infrastructure which is context independent, but then everything that happens on top of that really is about people who know best what the local issues are and are able to have the tools to deploy them in context. And that’s why we think this is a powerful idea.

11:00 Chandra: Yeah, in fact, it found a lot of mention in your pledge and this also ties in with the co-impact.

11:04 RN: Yes.

11:05 Chandra: Right. And, I also wanted to understand, you’ve sort of started testing this out with EkStep, Shankar Maruwada is of course leading the effort with you. What’s the initial response been? Are people comfortable with the plug and play approach where there is a platform you create and then you co-create, and then you amplify it using different networks. Are people comfortable with the idea of the delivery channels you’ve used.

11:30 NN: Oh absolutely. I think, we are amazed at the pickup. I think, once people realize that we just want to solve the problem and want to work with everybody, they all come around and that’s happening everywhere. I think, we’re also working on the National Teacher Platform. Many states are partnering, then Shibulal, Infosys co-founder is doing something for school leaders and they just recently had a workshop where they brought all the partners together, very good response. So I think they think that with this model of collegiality of collaboration, where you’re not saying, do it my way but saying here is a way to think about it, let’s work together.

12:13 Chandra: People don’t feel too threatened.

12:15 NN: Yeah, yeah. That is…

12:15 RN: No, No, we don’t need to be right up front.

12:17 Chandra: Right.

12:17 RN: We need to be the facilitators, and we need to build out, deploy the risk capital. There are enough people who know what to do. We don’t need to tell them how to do education, but we do need to be able to innovate on a tech platform and then allow people to deploy on it the tools they think will serve their needs the best.

12:36 NN: So, we think that a societal platform has somebody called a system leader who sort of curates this, catalyses this and sort of creates a way for everyone to come together.

12:47 RN: And which has been sort of our call to other philanthropists that you need somebody to deploy real money, it’s not loose change, it’s a little more than that, so that other people can build on top of that, but somebody who wants to deploy, invest in building that first architecture.

13:04 Chandra: Right. In fact, you described philanthropy as extreme risk capital and you also can’t control all the variables, the results are intangible. So then why have this 2020 target of touching 200 million kids.

13:17 NN: Yeah, see… They are two separate things. One is philanthropy is risk capital, it can be where governments don’t go and markets don’t see any returns.

13:26 Chandra: Correct, correct. Don’t see any value.

13:27 NN: And most civil society players don’t have the scale, so it has all these issues, so philanthropy can go there. So the idea being that they can take a risk because the worst case they will lose their money and that’s their money, so they are not accountable to somebody else. Unlike if it’s public money, you are accountable. If it’s shareholder money, you are accountable. This money you are only accountable to yourself. That’s the risk part of it. But when you take up a societal challenge, you need to be very definitive about the goals and you need to have ambitious, audacious goals. So when we said that, we want to reach 200 million children with better learning outcome by 2020, we are setting ourselves a very, very ambitious goal and that clears the mind. It forces us to think about how to solve the problems. Anybody gets into problem…

14:10 RN: And how to design for that scale.

14:12 NN: Yeah.

14:13 RN: Not allow ourselves to become the choke point.

14:15 Chandra: Right.

14:15 RN: That I learnt a lot from Ratan.

14:17 NN: The moment you make it so big, it’s beyond you. Then you are forced to scramble and figure out how to get it done with everybody.

[overlapping conversation]

14:22 Chandra: In fact, that was one thing I was coming to. This in effect, EkStep is sort of a startup that both of you are working on together.

14:28 RN: Yeah, my marriage also has survived.


14:32 Chandra: What sort of skills do both of you bring to the table, I mean cross function skills, do they match or do they sometimes… Is there friction? How has it been working together as founders of this venture?


14:45 RN: It was surprisingly smooth. I thought we would be fighting because we are a little different. But you know I really learned so much, I must say from the team and from the approach, because they take unimaginable scale, even when I started, when I co-founded Pratham Books, we said a book in every child’s hand. Of course we didn’t say a book in every third child’s hand. So we were also thinking large. So the systematic way they go about things and the technology team, which is really the brain power there and the heart there, was something I learned a lot from. I was able to bring some insight, and they’re very open to what I bring to the table. So I think, it has been really very smooth, and I think… Nandan, did you learn anything?


15:23 NN: Yeah, so in my case you know… Yeah, absolutely. People say my problem is that I’m very clinical and cerebral to problem solving. I don’t have any empathy, I just think. It’s all mind.

15:34 Chandra: So not just to us journalists?

15:36 NN: Huh?

15:36 Chandra: Not just to us journalists?


15:38 NN: So, Rohini brings that heart and empathy and gives… Actually she makes us think about the kids whereas we always think about some strategy stuff. So she connects with…

15:46 RN: No, I say child has to be at the center. So how are we reaching the child, I want to see, I want to know.

15:51 NN: I think she brings in that empathy…

15:53 Chandra: In terms of the human impact that you…

15:56 NN: Connectedness.

15:56 Chandra: If I look at the Giving Pledge in the seven years that it’s been there, there’ve been four signatories from India, I mean five, including if I take you both as separate ones. Is it disappointing the kind of numbers, because it terms of income inequality, India is probably one of the worst in the world. You know the top 1% pretty much hold 22% of the income. So we’ve just seen four out of 100 billionaires signing up. Do you see that changing or why do you think that is?

16:24 NN: I think you should not look at Giving Pledge as a metric for this. Philanthropy in India is on the rise. The India Philanthropy Initiative of which Rohini, Azim Premji and all are members is a very… Meets every year and there’s a lot of things. And many people are doing great things in their respective areas. The Tata Trust have been leaders for 100 years, amazing.

16:46 Chandra: Right. They’ve been, yeah, for 100s of years…

16:48 NN: I mean all the shareholding is held by trusts and they spend that money, a few hundred million dollars every year on philanthropy. And many, many of the business groups are doing lot of work quietly in many areas.

16:58 RN: Yeah, they are. They may not have signed the Giving Pledge…

17:01 Chandra: They’re doing, but they don’t want to show.

17:01 NN: So, I think that’s not a metric.

17:02 RN: And we keep meeting at the IPA. We keep meeting more and more people who are so keen to do more. They don’t have to join the Giving Pledge, but they’re learning to give much more and much better.

17:13 NN: We’re seeing a sea change in India.

17:13 RN: I think that’s what we should keep in mind.

17:16 Chandra: But culturally, do business families or do they have a problem with that because we are coded to save for the generations and generations after that and…

17:25 RN: Yeah, this point has been made often that obviously if you have inherited wealth, you feel obligated to pass it on. But even those families are themselves making new wealth which they have themselves created. So, I think, I feel that shackle hold that we have to give it forward is opening up.

17:44 NN: But our advantage is first generation wealth. So we can do anything we want.

17:48 RN: And there is much more wealth creation happening where the first time young people are coming into a lot of money and even if they don’t become billionaires, a lot of them are starting to give very early, and I think we shouldn’t forget those people as well when you’re talking about the art of giving…

18:02 Chandra: Right. In fact…

18:03 RN: Changing the culture, for me that matters. If it’s a norm, that when you have wealth, you give, you focus as much on giving as using it on yourself, then you’re shifting something in society, and that’s what I care about.

18:15 Chandra: Right. In fact, I was coming to that. What it is about Bangalore that all the four signatories of the Giving Pledge are in effect from here…

18:20 RN: Yeah. Wake up every other city, wake up.


18:24 Chandra: No, again, does it have to do with the fact that this is first generation wealth creation?

18:31 NN: It’s part of it.

18:32 Chandra: And we’ve also seen all of them. They’re not just writing a check, but they’re actually doing stuff individually. They’re very active. People like Kiran are very active. In civil society, from potholes to roads to everything. So what is it that sets Bangalore apart?

18:46 NN: I think it’s a mutual support thing, like Kiran and us, we work closely on many things, Azim and us, work closely on many things, so I think it’s part of the culture to do that. And I think it’s also setting a benchmark, so obviously more people will follow like that. So I think it’s just … in there.

19:07 Chandra: But in terms of the platform approach, it’s quite similar to how you looked at Aadhaar as a platform on top of which people can create impact. So again, is this a test of the design principles that Aadhaar had in, how a platform is effective?

19:24 NN: Yeah. It’s an evolution of that because…

19:25 Chandra: In terms of a pipe to prove.

19:27 NN: Yeah. So the Aadhaar was the first case where we, some of us thought about platforms, also with this whole idea of putting a big target and then getting everyone to work was also learned from that. So when I joined the government, we said 600 million people will have Aadhaar in five years and that time, it sounded like it was difficult but it happened. So that’s the lesson we learned that if I have an audacious… And even in Infosys, we said we’ll be a billion dollar company in X years. So when you set these big goals, it motivates everyone to work towards that. So a lot of the learning on platform thinking is definitely from Aadhaar. And the layers on Aadhaar that we designed over time Aadhaar has multiple layers including cashless, presence-less, UPI, this, that and the other.

20:10 Chandra: Right.

20:10 NN: But I think we have honed our thinking, and societal platform is the fact that you need to have digital infrastructure is common. The fact that you need to have co-creation of solutions, the fact that you need amplification, putting that into a methodology, all that is new. It’s basically, we have a think-do-think model. We think of something. We do it. We learn from it. We put it back…

20:35 Chandra: How is the time, because some people are thinkers, but they’re not doers. Some people are very good at execution, but not so much. It seemed a big picture.

20:42 RN: No, most people think before they do, [laughter] and when they do, they find everything doesn’t work so well and they have to rethink. So it’s a very common thing and then you…

20:50 NN: But we have this cycle. We come up with a construct…

20:53 RN: You make the cycle more.

20:54 NN: We implement the construct from that, implementation we’ll learn something, we go back and we refine the construct. So we keep iterating this.

21:01 RN: They know how to do it really fast.

21:03 NN: In weeks. We do it in weeks.

21:04 RN: And you know the feedback loops have become very small, but obviously the design principles and everything matter a lot, but what is also evolved is a strong philosophical core. That what do we mean by societal platforms, it has to be open, it has to be collaborative. In design, it must not block but open, and that’s very important in terms of the architecture. And there must be feedback loops with metrics based on this audacious goals that he’s talking about. And there are a few more things that are evolving…

21:33 NN: Unlocking scarce resources.

21:34 RN: Yes. Unlocking scarce resources. So we’re developing some philosophical principles at the core of our idea. And for me, those are very dear.

21:41 Chandra: And in terms of how Aadhaar has been used, do you see a lot of scope in social services, in the social sector?

21:47 NN: Oh definitely, of course. I think, obviously, the first big use case was benefits and two billion transactions have happened. Electronic cash transfers. 72,000 crores transferred. All that big stuff has happened. But I think over time, there will be a lot more use cases that will emerge and that innovation is gonna happen in the future because what we have seen with platform thinking like Internet and GPS is that, the innovation happens years and years after the platform emerge, so we are already seeing lot of activity in the private sector, in social sector, in government who think of new ways to use this technology.

22:22 Chandra: Right. And in terms of the way forward… Now, you’ve signed the pledge and I know you have this meeting with Bill Gates that happens in Bangalore every year but will you be meeting philanthropists from around the world, and will co-impact tie-in with the Giving Pledge. Just wanna understand how this works going forward.

22:41 RN: We don’t know so much about whether those two will tie but they have a annual event every year just like we have in India, and we are hoping to go for that. So that we can meet a lot more people.

22:52 NN: And most of the members of the co-impact are also, at least the individuals are all members of the Giving Pledge…

22:55 RN: As part… Many are the part of the Giving Pledge.

22:58 NN: But the Rockefeller Foundation is also very old and very prestigious foundation. So they’re leading the effort on bringing all these players together. Same thing, how do we bring collaborative solution, problem solving.

23:10 RN: And scale up diversity, how do you find ways, because as I say…

23:15 Chandra: It’s not a one side… Yeah.

23:17 RN: You’re trying to create a unified but not a uniform approach. And especially in India, it’s so important to be able to do that. We hope to learn also by meeting others from the Giving Pledge.

23:26 Chandra: Right. And how are you planning to divide your time between Infosys and startups and Fundamentum and Giving Pledge?

23:33 NN: Well, I’m not investing in any more startups.

23:36 RN: Good question.


23:36 Chandra: Good question.

23:36 NN: Well, I’m not investing in any more startups. So any investment I do is only to scale up company which is through the Fundamentum. Obviously, the existing startup investments are, I have to nurture them. Infosys, I’m there is the non executive chairman and so that takes some of my time and otherwise it’s all this philanthropy stuff. It’s not complicated.

24:00 RN: It’s true though. I mean after 35 years I think Nandan has much more time for the kind of things we’re working on together.

24:06 Chandra: Right, I’m gonna come to the last section. And I have a rapid fire…

24:09 NN: Oh god.

24:09 RN: Oh no.

24:11 Chandra: For both of you. Which I hope will be rapid and fiery. So my first question, a book that changed your life?

24:15 RN: Oh dear.

24:16 Chandra: You can pick multiple ones if you want.

24:18 RN: I mean there are hundreds of them. I can’t answer stuff like that. A book that changed my life is it?

24:25 Chandra: What about you sir?

24:26 NN: Well, I’ve read a lot of books. But I think since business and strategy is important, I think The Mind of the Strategist by Ken Ohmae, a friend of ours from Japan, in the early days is something that gave me a mental model to think about strategy.

24:40 Chandra: A quality that Nandan has that you wish you had?

24:45 RN: Calmness.

24:45 Chandra: Really?

24:47 RN: It didn’t seem like that to you?

24:47 Chandra: A quality…


24:48 Chandra: Not at press conferences.

24:51 RN: No, honestly a very…

24:51 Chandra: We’re all worried that our heads will get …

24:52 RN: He has a very deep ability not to get stressed out. He’s not impulsive. So he can take things and look at them really with a lot of inner strength.

25:08 Chandra: A quality that Rohini has you wish you had?

25:10 NN: High empathy. I’m a poor empath. I see everything very clinically and she used to say that emotionlessly in some sense.

25:19 Chandra: Since both of you make investments, you’ve invested in media ventures doing startups, one quality that you look for while investing in an entrepreneur?

25:26 NN: She only invests in things that spend money, not making money.


25:30 RN: No. I focus on the non-profit side of it. I’m not that great at market investments. So I might just begin slowly. But if I’m investing, then definitely for me, the commitment of the people doing whatever they’re doing matters. And obviously what their intent and the goals are important, too.

25:49 NN: I look for the people. The quality of entrepreneurs, long distance runners.

25:54 Chandra: So irrespective of market or non market.

25:55 RN: Yeah, it doesn’t matter. You want something to succeed.

25:56 RN: Yeah, long distance runners. People who want to have deferred gratification. Want to build great companies. Other things can fall into place. The business model.

26:03 Chandra: The rewards. Yeah.

26:06 NN: They can pivot, all that will happen. The people is the thing…

26:06 Chandra: The philanthropist who inspires you the most.

26:09 RN: I think I would say Bill. Bill and Melinda because the more I meet them, the more I see their journey, we get re-inspired each time. I mean look at the scale of what they’re trying to do and their complete commitment and energy…

26:24 Chandra: And they’ve also got many others to do it.

26:24 RN: And what they have done to the space of philanthropy today.

26:29 NN: Bill of course. But I think even the Tatas. I think what Jamshedji Tata did 100 years back to set up the Tata Trust, the Tata Sons, that’s an amazing achievement.

26:36 RN: And Azim Premji has very deep commitment. Very deep philosophical belief along with Yasmeen that the wealth has to be used to make India better. Indian society better. That inspires me too.

26:51 Chandra: What can I find on your mobile home screen? Your go to app?

26:56 RN: Neither of use technology as much as we should. So what will you find? You will find some games. I’m not into apps so much. Mostly we use…

27:05 NN: No technology.

27:06 Chandra: Twitter.

27:07 RN: We don’t use our phone…

27:07 NN: No, I don’t use…

27:10 RN: I use my phone for making phone calls and shooting many, many, many videos of my grandson. That’s pretty much it. Or SMS. Actual telephones. I use my phone like a phone. And I use it like a camera.

27:23 Chandra: Okay. On that note, thank you so much for talking to ET Now. Great fun having both of you on the show.

27:27 RN: Thank you for your questions. Thank you…

[overlapping conversation]

27:30 NN: Thank you so much.

27:30 Chandra: And hopefully this will inspire many, many more billionaires. Many other wealthy people in India to give back. But on that note, thank you so much for watching the show The Art of Giving.


The Art Of Giving : Nandan Nilekani & Rohini Nilekani

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