Sudha Murthy, a person with a compassionate heart and wide wisdom. A humble personality.An inspiring lady and one of my favorite novelists, of all time. She’s one of those writers whose books can touch a school student as well as a middle-aged person. Her books aren’t restricted to a certain age group and that’s the best part about her books. She’s a perfect mix of modernism and culture.
She was born to Dr. R.H. Kulkarni and Vimala Kulkarni in Shiggaon, Karnataka. Sudha Murthy had done her BE in Electrical Engineering from B.V.B College of Engineering and Technology. She obtained first in her class and received the gold medal from the then Karnataka Chief Minister, Sri Devaraj Urs. After completing her studies, she pursued M.E. in Computer Science from Indian Institute of Science. She obtained the gold medal from the Indian Institute of Engineers for coming first.
She was the first female engineer to be hired by India’s largest auto manufacturer TELCO (Tata Engineering and Locomotive Company) now Tata motors.
She worked as Development Engineer in Pune, Mumbai, and Jamshedpur. She then worked as Senior System Analyst in Walchand group of Industries in Pune. While working in TELCO in Pune, she met Mr. Narayan Murthy, fell in love and got married. They have two kids Akshata and Rohan.
As many of you would be aware, Narayan Murthy is one of the founders of Infosys Limited (formerly Infosys Technologies Limited).
It is an Indian multinational corporation that provides business consulting, information technology and outsourcing services. It has its headquarters in Banglore, Karnataka, India.
Infosys is the second-largest Indian IT company by 2017 revenues and 596th largest public company in world in terms of revenue.
Sudha Murthy had contributed Rs 10,000 to the founding of Infosys and continues to be a trustee.
She loves teaching, and she is a visiting professor in Bangalore university as well as Christ college.
She is a renowned philanthropist as well as a famous writer.
AS A WRITER
She is an avid lover of books, drama as well as music. She’s a movie buff as well. She has written approximately twenty books in English and Kannada, in addition to many columns. It includes novels, technical books, travelogues, works of non-fiction well as fiction. Her books have been translated to all major Indian languages.
Her books are generally based on her life experiences. She pen downs her experiences which generally revolves around gender discrimination, Indian mentality, poverty and general issues, we come across.As a result, her books are very relatable to every age group. She, in my opinion, is a must-read author.
I became an avid reader when I was in 8th or 9th grade. And she was one of my favorite authors and still is. Even today, if I re-read those books, I love it all the same and that is the magic of simple yet interesting writing style of hers.
A list of her books:
• Samanyaralli Asamanyaru
• Kaveri Inda Mekaangige
• Guttondu Heluve
• Manada Matu
• Dollar Sose
• Makkaligagi – Nanna Mechina Kathegalu
• Hakkiya Teradalli
• Shalamakkaligagi Computer
• Sukeshini Mattu Itara Makkala Kathegalu
• Computer Lokadalli
• The Serpent’s Revenge
• How I Taught My Grandmother to Read
• Something Happened on the Way to Heaven
• The Old Man and His God: Discovering the Spirit of India
• The Day I Stopped Drinking Milk
• Wise and Otherwise
• Gently Falls the Bakula
• The Accolades Galore
• The Bird with Golden Wings: Stories of Wit and Magic
• Dollar Bahu
• Grandma’s Bag of Stories (children’s fiction)
• The Magic Drum And Other Favourite Stories (children’s stories)
• House of Cards
• The Mother I Never Knew'(two novellas)
• Three thousand stitches
• “The Man from the Egg”
AS A PHILANTHROPIST
Her social work is generally in fields concerning healthcare, education, empowerment of women, public hygiene, and poverty. She has set up approximately 50,000 libraries,as she has a dream that each school should be equipped with a library . She is helping in building of 10,000 public toilets and several hundred toilets in the city of Bangalore. Through Foundation she has built 2,300 houses in the flood affected areas. She has handled national natural disasters like tsunami in Tamil Nadu and Andaman, earthquake in Kutch – Gujarat, hurricane and floods in Orissa, Andhra Pradesh and drought in Karnataka and Maharashtra.
I don’t just admire her as a writer but as a person.
She is an epitome of how a person should be, in my opinion.
She is very well educated and is quite wealthy and she stills opts for a simple living and believes in helping the people in need. Moreover, she works for the betterment of our society as well, without trying to garner attention for her service towards the society.
She has been honoured by numerous awards for her philanthropy, her literary work as well as for her academic excellence:
• Gold Medal from the Indian Institute of Engineers, India for having secured the I Rank in M.Tech. of all the branches of Engineering
• Gold Medal from the Chief Minister of Karnataka Sri Devaraj Urs, for securing the highest marks in B.E. of all the Universities of Engineering in Karnataka
• Cash award for having secured the highest marks in SSLC
• C S Desai Prize for standing first in the University Exams of Karnataka
• Youth Service Department Prize from Government of Karnataka, for having been the outstanding engineering student of Karnataka
• 1995: Best Teacher Award in 1995 from the Rotary Club of Bangalore
• National Award from Public Relation Society of India for outstanding Social Service to the Society
• ‘Attimabbe’ award for her technical book in Kannada (Shaale Makkaligagi Computer – meaning computers for school children)
• Award for Excellent Social Service by Rotary South – Hubli
• 2000: ‘Karnataka Rajyotsava’ State Award for the year 2000, for achievement in the field of literature and social work
• 2001: ‘Ojaswini’ award for excellent social work for the year 2000
• ‘Millenium Mahila Shiromani’ award
• 2002: Voted as Woman of the Year by RadioCity [Bangalore FM station] on International Women’s Day
• 2004: Murthy was presented with the Raja-Lakshmi Award “in recognition of her outstanding contribution to social work” by the Sri Raja-Lakshmi Foundation in Chennai.
• 2006: Murthy was awarded the Padma Shri, the fourth highest-ranking civilian award from the Government of India, and received an honorary doctorate for her contributions in the spheres of social work, philanthropy, and education.
• 2006: She also received the R.K. Narayana’s Award for Literature.
• 2011: Murthy was conferred honorary LL.D (Doctor of Laws) degrees for their contributions to promoting formal legal education and scholarship in India.
• 2013: Basava Shree-2013 Award was presented to Narayan Murthy & Sudha Murthy for their contributions to society at Basaveshwara Medical College auditorium. Basava Shree award comprises a plaque and a cheque of `5 lakh, Sudha Murthy handed over award money to an orphanage run by the mutt.
2018: She received the Life Time Achievement Award at the Crossword-Raymond Book Awards.
I wish we have more of such people in our country in the coming years.