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Gandhi hated poverty and supported entrepreneurship: Jerry Rao

Jery Rao
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Chennai: Today marks the 152nd birth anniversary of father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi. The world remembers him as the twentieth century’s greatest political and spiritual leader. He has shown world power in non-violence and satyagraha. But his economic ideas were mostly ignored.

Jerry Rao founder and former CEO of the software company Mphasis expressed his interpretation of Gandhi and economics while conversing with The Free Media, said the statement given by Gandhi, “The world has enough for everyone’s needs, but not everyone’s greed” is misinterpreted by few socialists. Gandhi hated poverty and peoples’ assumptions were wrong about him. On the contrary Gandhi supported entrepreneurship, wealth creation. He even supported talented people getting rewarded for wealth. He was not for some kind of egalitarian socialism; rather he was completely against extreme state ownership of resources and certainly against nationalization of private property.

Gandhiji was against the idolatrous worship of wealth, he was not against wealth creation, he was in favour of Individual wealth creation, but he was definitely in oppose of rapacious taxation imposed by the state. Gandhi advised individuals to instrumentally use their wealth wisely as trusties rather than as an owner.

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While elaborating why Gandhi specifically introduced the concept of trustees, writer Jerry said, “Gandhi was an English barrister and the concept of trustee was unique to English people; it’s not there in continental European law. Gandhi derived his ideas from a book called Snell’s equity which is very fundamental in common law, where the trusty does not act on his/ her interest but in the interest of the beneficiary. Anthony Parel the historian and philosopher pointed out that Gandhi was against ascetic tradition; he was for involvement in the world and wanted to bring the dharmic tradition back in.”

Trusteeship is actually addressed to the rich people and the government. He suggested to the government not to manage the wealth let the rich people manage it. And to the rich people he suggested don’t manage wealth foolishly and don’t be the slave of wealth. He also urges rich people not to give too much wealth to their children, in spite of giving them education. For the poor people Gandhi advises don’t think you will become rich by killing the rich people instead do the required hard work.

Gandhi also believed Modern industrialization makes machines out of people, he was always interested in human machines and he did not want people to become slaves of machines and wealth. “But on the contrary the Charkha he loved, the printing press he used, the trains he travelled in were machines”. Jerry Rao added.



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