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Fireside Chat with Dr. Jagdish Sheth

May 2024
Fireside Chat with Dr. Jagdish Sheth

On March 16, 2024, an online session was packed with several dignitaries of India and various universities, along with family and friends of the authors for the launch of the book India’s Road to Transformation: Why Leadership Matters written by Dr. Jagdish Sheth and Prof. Gyanendra Singh.

Kritika Padode Bhandari led the discussionon the book which is about the role of leadership in managing a diverse and humungous nation like India. The authors studied biographies of transformative leaders such as Abraham Lincoln in the U.S., Margaret Thatcher in the U.K., and Mustafa Kemal in Turkey. They also researched the transformations of Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, and China. Their conclusion was that it takes four to five years to reform a nation, but it takes at least 15 years to transform it.

AT_4_05_24.jpgDr. Sheth shared that he met Prime Minister Modi when he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat. He was invited to conduct a seminar for the Chief Minister and his cabinet on how to position Gujarat as a global business hub, similar to the work he had done for the government of Singapore. According to Dr. Sheth, Prime Minister Modi has the same characteristics as other transformative leaders: a positive belief in the future of the nation; mission-driven execution whether it is building a monumentor the nation; strategic use of technology to transform the country, whether it is financial inclusion or communication with the masses; an inclusive approach and approachability; great communication; and. beingthe best brand ambassador for the nation all over the world. 

During the Chat, Dr. Sheth discussed India’s spectacular growth, democratizing education through the new education policy “NEP 2020,” and women’s empowerment. Most importantly, Indians now have a positive self-image, and the world is recognizing the power of India’s talented people. He said that the G20 Summit was a well-organized and executed event and that as a result, India is no longer perceived as a country of roaming cows and snake charmers.

The program concluded with Dr. Sheth giving words of thanks and gratitude for everyone’s support with the highlight being the ever-present and lifelong support of his wife, Madhu Sheth.

-  Geeta Mehrotra

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