Nandan Nilekani - Inspiration To The Indian Middle-Class Youth

Nandan Nilekani - Inspiration To The Indian Middle-Class Youth

We all must have heard about the multinational company, "Infosys." With more than forty years of expertise in managing the systems and operations of multinational organisations, Infosys effectively guides its customers through their digital transformation journey.

India is frequently referred to as the globe's IT hub, and the credit for this goes to a few jewels. Nandan Nilekani, the co-founder of Infosys, is one of them. He is the guy behind India's "Aadhar Cards," which have been used to register 131.68 crore individuals to date. He was the driving force behind India's IT boom, beginning in 1978 when companies like Microsoft didn't even exist.

He is a legend and an inspiration to the educated Indian middle class, who perceive him as a guy who has risen to exceptional levels in life only through hard work. After watching his father's repeated work migrations and following migrations in his early days, he aspired to be an independent entrepreneur.

After acquiring education from the IIT, where he learned to work hard and perform as part of a team, he was transformed from a small town youngster to a confident and mature young man. He also grasped the necessity of giving back to society, which is an essential aspect of his persona that hasn't changed over the years.

Read this article further, to know about the journey of Nandan Nilekani, his biography, starting from his early life, education, his current state, and much more.

Nandan Nilekani - Biography

Name Nandan Nilekani
YOB 1955
Nationality Indian
Spouse Rohini Nilekani
Political Party Indian National Congress
Occupation Non-Executive Chairman of Infosys
Education St Joseph's High school Dharwad
Alma Mater IIT Bombay (BTech)

Nandan Nilekani - Early Life, and Education
Nandan Nilekani - Family
Nandan Nilekani - Career
Nandan Nilekani - Investments
Nandan Nilekani - Bibliography
Nandan Nilekani - Awards, and Recognitions

Nandan Nilekani - Early Life, and Education

Nandan Nilekani
Nandan Nilekani

Nandan Nilekani was born in Bangalore, Karnataka, on June 2, 1955. His parents, Durga and Mohan Rao Nilekani are from Sirsi, a small town in the Northern Karnataka region. Konkani is his first tongue. In addition to Konkani, he is fluent in Kannada, English, Marathi, and Hindi.

Nilekani attended Bishop Cotton Boys' School and St. Joseph's High School in Dharwad, Karnataka PU College Dharwad, and graduated from the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay in Mumbai with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.

Nandan Nilekani - Family

Nandan Nilekani's father's and mother's names are Mohan Rao Nilekani and Durga Rao Nilekani, respectively. His father was the general manager of Mysore and Minerva Mills, and he believed in Fabian Socialist ideas, which impacted Nilekani as a child. Vijay Nilekani, Nilekani's older brother, works at the Nuclear Energy Institute in the United States.

Nilekani married Rohini Nilekani, whom he met during an IIT quiz contest. Nihar and Janhavi are their two children, both of whom have graduated from Yale University with a bachelor's degree.

Nandan Nilekani with his Wife Rohini Nilekani
Nandan Nilekani with his Wife Rohini Nilekani

Top 10 Indian Companies by Market Value
As per the latest studies, the Market value of the top Indian companies has surged by 1.2 lakh crores in a week. Here is the list of all those companies.

Nandan Nilekani - Career

Information Technology, and Infosys

Company Logo of Infosys
Company Logo of Infosys

He began his career in 1978 at Patni Computer Systems in Mumbai, when he met and was interviewed by N.R. Narayana Murthy. Nilekani, Murthy, and five of his other Patni colleagues resigned in 1981 to establish Infosys. Nilekani became the Chief Executive Officer of Infosys in March 2002 and held the position until April 2007, when he passed over the reigns to his colleague Kris Gopalakrishnan and became co-chairman of the executive board. Nilekani held many positions before becoming CEO in 2002, including managing director, chief operating officer, and president.

From March 2002 to April 2007, he was the company's CEO. Infosys' revenue grew exponentially during his five-year term as CEO. He returned to Infosys in 2017 when CEO Vishal Sikka left to become chairman. Upon his return, he relocated the company's power centre from California to Bengaluru.


Nilekani left Infosys in July 2009 to become the chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India, which he accepted at the request of then Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh. As the head of the UIDAI, he was in charge of implementing the Multipurpose National Identity Card, or Unique Identity Card programme in India.

This effort intends to equip every Indian inhabitant with a unique identity number, which will be used largely to effectively deliver social benefits. The means of identification was biometric, and the effort to construct a government database of India's entire population has been dubbed "the world's largest social enterprise."

They created Aadhaar, an Indian biometric ID system that includes a database of population information and home locations for Indians. In April 2017, 1.14 billion Indians received their national identification number. Aadhaar was dubbed "the most advanced ID scheme in the world" by World Bank Chief Economist Paul Romer in 2016. This software has been chastised for invading people's privacy and disclosing sensitive data.

He is the president of NCAER and a member of the ICRIER, which stands for, the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations' board of governors. He also belongs to the Bombay Heritage Fund and the World Economic Forum Foundation's advisory boards.

Nilekani, to promote his book Imagining India: The Idea of a Renewed Nation, has been on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. He also gave a TED talk about his vision for India's future in 2009.


EkStep is a non-profit literacy and numeracy platform. Nilekani is the chairman of EkStep.  EkStep, which was founded by the Nilekanis with an initial investment of $10 million (about Rs 65 crore), aims to solve the 'learning problem' by developing a technology-driven platform to assist youngsters in enhancing their 'learning outcomes' from a young age. EkStep plans to achieve so through gamified applications available on the Google Play Store.


In March 2014, Nilekani joined the Indian National Congress and contested the Bangalore South Lok Sabha seat election. He lost by 228,575 votes versus Bhartiya Janta Party's candidate Ananth Kumar. He joined a committee in December 2016 to look at how consumers in India may make better use of digital payments.


Nilekani is the president of the NCAER, which stands for, National Council of Applied Economic Research. NCAER is India's oldest and biggest non-profit economic research think tank, situated in New Delhi. NCAER, which was launched in 1956, conducts sponsored research and independent economic policy research projects for governments and businesses.

Its research spans practically every aspect of economics, from forecasting to poverty studies. NCAER is one of only a few think tanks in the world that collects primary survey data from homes, businesses, customers, and individuals on a scientific, nationwide scale. The NCAER's social and economic data sets are frequently utilised in Indian research and analysis.

12 Unknown and Interesting Facts about Infosys
Infosys is a multinational information technology company founded by N.R. Narayana Murthy and 6 founders. Here are some of the interesting facts about Infosys.

Nandan Nilekani - Investments

Nandan Nilekani has made 19 personal investments to date, which are as follows :

Date Organization Name Round Amount
Feb 24, 2020 RailYatri Series B $14.3M
Feb 24, 2020 IntrCity Series B $14.3M
Sep 26, 2018 PharmEasy Series C $50M
Apr 27, 2018 IntrCity Series B $8M
Apr 27, 2018 RailYatri Series B $8M
Sep 19, 2017 Power2SME Series E $26M
Jul 11, 2017 ThePrint Venture Round ₹450M
Jul 1, 2017 Felis Creations Angel Round ₹5.5M
Dec 26, 2016 ShopX Venture Round $5M
Oct 19, 2016 IntrCity Venture Round $3M

Nandan Nilekani - Bibliography

  • Imagining India: The Idea of a Renewed Nation
  • Rebooting India: Realizing a Billion Aspirations

Naresh Goyal Biography - Founder of Jet Airways | Family | Net worth | Career | Age
Naresh Goyal , his first salary was just Rs 300 per month. From there to becoming the founder of JetAirways. Know about the family and biography of Naresh Goyal, whose net worth goes beyond 8000 crore.

Nandan Nilekani - Awards, and Recognitions

Year Awards/Recognition
2019 Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) by IIT Bombay during the Institute's 57th Convocation
2017 Lifetime Achievement Award from E & Y, CNBC- TV 18 conferred India Business leader award for the outstanding contributor to the Indian Economy-2017, and India Today magazine ranked him 12th in India's 50 most powerful people of 2017 list
2011 NDTV Indian of the Year's Transformational Idea of the Year Award, and Doctor of Law degree by the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto
2009 'Legend in Leadership Award' by the Yale University, and the Time magazine placed Nilekani in the Time 100 list of 'World's Most Influential People'
2006 Padma Bhushan, and Businessman of the Year by Forbes Asia
2005 Joseph Schumpeter Prize for innovative services in the economy, economic sciences and politics
2004 Corporate Citizen of the Year at the Asia Business Leaders Award (2004) organised by CNBC


Is Nandan Nikalen still with Infosys

Nandan Nikalen is the chairman of the Board of Infosys.

What is the net worth of Nandan Nikalen?

The net worth of Nandan Nikalen is 290 crores USD as of 2022.

What is Nandan Nilekani doing now?

Nandan Nilekani is currently working with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to build open technology for small merchants.

Must have tools for startups - Recommended by StartupTalky

Read more