There’s a very simple question that lies at the heart of every decision that a business will have to take. If that were the talisman that one always wore, we’ll be adding tremendous value to the lives of people and, quite naturally, enhancing the country’s economic prosperity. By extension, we will, as a business, also grow in finance and in people’s estimation. The question is merely this: Would my action enhance respect for my company and for me in the society? This is, I believe, at the heart of the idealism of capitalism. At this stage in the history of India when capitalism is new, when we see a lot of poverty around us, when 700 to 800 million Indians live with hardly two meals a day, it is incumbent on every leader of capitalism to demonstrate that idealism. I believe that entrepreneurship is the only instrument in our hands to create jobs and put income into the hands of people and make them economically viable.
Many of us may recollect a time when entrepreneurship and business people were not looked upon in India in the same positive way as they are now. By and large, you could say businessmen have been decent people. Even in the past, like it is today, it was always a small percentage of businessmen who created a bad name for businesses by their action. Such people create an environment where being wealthy is frowned upon. But poverty is not a virtue and Leftism is not the way forward. We have to embrace whatever instrument we have to create more and more jobs with better and better income. That, whether we like it or not, is possible only through entrepreneurship. And, entrepreneurship will thrive only in an environment of compassionate capitalism—fair, decent, honest actions in creating wealth and jobs.