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Philosophy, wisdom and some whiskey

Updated on: 30 April,2023 07:53 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Hemal Ashar |

Olympian Abhinav Bindra, writer and Infosys Foundation founder Sudha Murthy give audience magical evening with thought-provoking address

Philosophy, wisdom and some whiskey

Abhinav Bindra and Sudha Murthy at the Indian Merchants Chamber (IMC), Walchand Hirachand Hall, on Friday. Pic/Atul Kamble

Excellence in storytelling and sport came together at the Indian Merchants Chamber (IMC), Walchand Hirachand Hall, on Friday evening as Olympian Abhinav Bindra was at the SoBo venue as Guest of Honour and Sudha Murthy, founder Infosys Foundation took centre-stage at the IMC Ramkrishna Bajaj National Quality (RBNQ) Awards 2022.

Murthy was recipient of the IMC Juran Quality Medal for individual excellence. Wearing the medal that she just won, Murthy regaled the packed hall with her stories. She said, “What is quality? My father told me when even under pressure, you do not change the base principle of your work, your core belief, that is quality.” Murthy cautioned this did not mean not adjusting, for that is essential for relationships to work. “Quality is different, more fundamental, stemming from your education and values, it comes from within.” 

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Murthy’s candid style, much like her books, had the audience captivated throughout. “You need to make money, money is important. Yet so are human relationships and those bring you tremendous joy. All success makes one arrogant, all failure makes one diffident. Both means you have a balance. Life itself has to be like a well balanced diet, a thali where everything is served, but you eat in the right proportion,” she said. 

Abhinav Bindra, who presented  a number of RBNQ Awards for organisational excellence, talked about how, “a medal is attached to my identity”. “For the outside world, I am seen as a gold medallist rather than Abhinav, first.” The ace shooter, set a cracking pace as he spoke about his journey to gold, replicating competition like conditions at home, “undergoing liposuction to remove my love handles so that it will improve my stance and undergoing Lasik surgery to improve my eyesight”. There was meditation, visualisation and when, “I won gold in Beijing 2008, it seemed all worth it.” Yet Bindra did speak about how world rankings should not define oneself. “We are not robots, we are people. Sport is ruthless, we need to humanise the pursuit... I say be kinder to yourself, I should have been kinder to myself,” explained Bindra. He signed off saying, “there is a story that has gone viral where it is said I had a couple of pegs of a certain brand of whiskey the night before the Olympics competition to calm my nerves. Looking back, I now think I should have had a better brand”. 

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