HomeQuotes73 Quotes by Sudha Murthy (Sorted by Category)

73 Quotes by Sudha Murthy (Sorted by Category)

When it comes to philanthropy in India, Sudha Murthy, Chairperson of the Infosys Foundation, is widely recognized as one of the leading contributors in recent decades. In 2006, the government awarded her the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award in India, to commemorate her grassroots level social work.

Apart from her philanthropic work, she is also an acclaimed author, having written notable books like How I Taught My Grandmother to read, Mahashwetu, and Dollar Bahu. She started her career by becoming the first female engineer to be hired at India’s largest auto manufacturer TATA Engineering and Locomotive Company (TELCO).

For the uninitiated, she also played an essential role in the founding of Infosys by giving Rs 10,000 to her husband, Narayan Murthy(Infosys CEO), to start the company. She also supported him financially in the early days of Infosys.

As is often the case with someone who has lived a diverse and successful life, Sudha Murthy has amassed wisdom in her journey. In an attempt to collate her thoughts, we collected 73 quotes attributed to her, diving them into the following categories: life, philanthropy, women, success, work, money, simplicity, leadership, family, marriage and relationships, children, friendship, teachers, reading, writing, books, movies & Politics & Governance.

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Life

  • “Life is an exam where the syllabus is unknown and question papers are not set. Nor are there model answer papers.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “If you try to please everyone, you will please no one. It is impossible to lead your life for others’ happiness.”
  • “Experience has taught me that honesty is not the mark of any particular class nor is it related to education or wealth. It cannot be taught at any university. In most people, it springs naturally from the heart.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “Many a times there is no perfect solution for a given problem. No solution is also a solution. Everything depends upon how you look at it. We make judgements on others depending upon what we think of them.”
  • “At twenty, if you are not an idealist, then you don’t have a heart. And if you continue being an idealist at forty, then you don’t have a brain.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “When someone gets cheated, that person gets upset not because they have lost money but because he or she realizes that they have been foolish enough to be tricked by someone.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “There is a difference between loneliness and solitude. Loneliness is boring, whereas in solitude you can inspect and examine your deeds and your thoughts.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “A fire cannot be extinguished with another fire. It is only water that can make a difference.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “Struggle is life.”
  • “A Cuckoo should never dance and a Peacock should not try to sing!”
  • “Nature is very intelligent. Whether you are good looking or not, whether you are intelligent or not, whether you are rich or not, you only have 24 hours in a day. Whatever your set of problems or difficulties or solutions, you have to accommodate all of them in 24 hours.”
  • “When you are chiselling a sculpture, it won’t happen in one day, it happens over a period of time. It’s the same way that my personality has changed over the past 15 years. I am not the same person I used to be and my life experiences are what have made me.”
  • What separates old from the young is experience and patience.
Sudha Murthy Quote on Life
  • “Most people share a yearning to be something bigger than them. Something they can be excited about and something that will challenge them to go beyond being average.”
  • “It is very difficult to earn trust. It takes years to build and it can be destroyed in an instant by one bad deed. Trust requires an enormous amount of integrity and you have to prove every time that you are worthy of it.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Philanthropy

  • “I hail from a middle class educated family and now that God is kind to me by giving me enough money, I want to share it with others.”
  • ” When we started out, I kept wondering, what are the rules of philanthropy? And it turns out that there are rules for it. And nobody could talk about that. There is no set formula for this because anything with a human being cannot have a formula.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Philanthropy
  • “There were instances when I felt cheated because my feeling of social service was neither acknowledged or reciprocated by the second party. It is with growing age and experience that I realised, I was doing it for myself and not for others. Hence, I found my happiness and satisfaction in it.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Philanthropy
  • “When a mother feels cold, she asks the child to wear a sweater. Our concept of poverty is that way. When we do a project and people receive our help, we may think that they are getting benefited, but is this what they really wanted?”
  • “Whenever you take on a project, there should be an exit policy. You cannot help people forever.”
  • “Every philanthropist has a soft corner for one issue. For me, it is health, because my father was a doctor.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Women

  • “Growing up, I dreamt of being economically independent because I always believed women should be so.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Women
  • “Education, leading to financial independence, has surely made women more empowered.”
  • “My first exposure to sanitation issues occurred when I got admission into an engineering college. They probably didn’t want to admit me and informed me that there was no ladies toilet in the college. I was adamant and pursued my studies in engineering in that very college.”
  • “It was March 1974, I was in my MTech final year when I came across a notice which stated – Telco requires bright, young engineers at a salary of Rs 1,500. This was big money at that time. But that notice followed with a line that said lady students need not apply. I was agitated!”
  • “I like portraying women of character in my books. Women who exhibit loyalty and courage.”
  • “Mythology has largely been written by men and focusses on men – on wars and men, who went to war. But, there are women who influence the decisions of men.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Success

  • “We should always have some aim in life which we must try to achieve while being of help to others.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Success
  • “I can give you many examples of people who may not have studied much but have done well for themselves because they believed they could.”
  • “Confidence doesn’t mean that everything will go our way. It simply gives us the ability to accept failures that we will inevitably meet on our path and move forward with hope.”
  • “When climbing the ladder it is very easy to kick those below, but one must not forget that you cannot stay at the top forever. The higher you go, the longer is the fall.”
  • “It doesn’t matter how intelligent you are, how well off you are, or how well connected you are. Your perseverance, your courage – if you keep that intact, only such people will always be successful.”
  • “Vision without action is merely a dream; action without vision is merely passing time; but vision and action together can change the world.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Work

  • “I work every day, but every day is a holiday for me because I enjoy my work.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Work
  • “Rich or poor, it is good to do our own work and be fit.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Money

  • “You may be rich enough to buy comfort & luxuries, but the same money doesn’t define class or give you the ability to purchase it.” 
  • “Quantitatively speaking, ‘conversation’ is inversely proportional to economic standing. If you are traveling in a bus, your fellow passengers will get into a conversation with you very quickly and without any reservation. If you are traveling by first class on a train, people will be more reserved. If you are traveling by air, then the likely hood of getting into a conversation is quite small. If you are in first class on an international flight then you may travel 24 hours without exchanging a single word with the person sitting next to you.”
  • “Money is one thing which rarely unites and mostly divides people.”
  • “Money should come slowly over a period of time. Then only does one respect it. Whether it’s a man or a woman, earning too much money in too short a period is as bad as excess liquor.”
  • “Most people do not have the same values when they get money. Money changes a person completely. Very few people can withstand the lure of money and they are difficult to find. I have learnt that wherever there is money, people like to take advantage of the situation and maximize their return.”

Sudha Murthy Quote on Simplicity

  • “I always tell everyone to live a simple life and listen to their conscience. The beauty of a person lies in simplicity and confidence, so live life for yourself and not others.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Simplicity

Sudha Murthy Quote on Leadership

  • “Exceptional leaders don’t impart just vision, rather they cultivate the emergence of vision.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Family

  • “Each patient is precious. Be careful. If a patient dies, it is just one more hospital death for the doctor. But for the unfortunate family, it is a permanent loss.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Family
  • “When daughters grow up, they become good friends to mothers but when young boys grow up, they become strangers.”
  • “All innovators face challenges and seldom enjoy family support.”
  • “In my case, both my grandmothers made a huge impact on my early childhood days. But, as I grew older, people rarely made an impact or influenced me.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Marriage & Relationships

  • With my experience in life, I want to tell you that having good relationships, compassion and peace of mind is much more important than achievements, awards, degrees or money.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Relationships
  • “Who is the best friend to a man and a woman?” The answer is: “A wife to her husband and a husband to his wife.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Children

  • “We can give our children only two things in life which are essential. Strong roots and powerful wings. Then they may fly anywhere and live independently. Of all the luxuries in life, the greatest luxury is getting freedom of the right kind.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Children
  • “With one or two children at home, I feel that parents concentrate too much on them and hence children lose touch with reality. They get whatever they desire and fail to understand that in real life you may or may not get what you wish for.”

Sudha Murthy Quote on Friendship

  • “I lost many friendships because of my wealth. When my friends met me, they had an agenda in mind. Just because I had money, they expected one thing or the other from me, which they didn’t before.”

Sudha Murthy Quote on Teachers

  • When a doctor makes a mistake, a person goes six feet below the ground. When a judge makes a mistake, a person is hung six feet above the ground. But when a teacher makes a mistake, the entire batch of students is destroyed. Don’t ever look down on teachers.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on teachers

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Reading 

  • “Coming from a middle-class background of Northern Karnataka, where good education was the only insurance policy, I started reading and writing very early.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Reading
  • “My library is segregated into philosophy, history, general reading, travel, my own books… and only three cookbooks.”
  • “During my younger days, we didn’t have digital media or electronic gadgets the way we do now. So the best part of my day was the one I spent either listening to stories from my elders or reading them.”
  • “Sometimes, my reading choices are defined by the place I’m travelling next.”
  • “From fiction, you do not get to learn much because it is only imagination. Whereas, from non-fiction, people can understand and learn from the realities it covers.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Writing

  • “Writing is an art, just like any other creative exercise – painting a picture, singing a song, or dancing. It is an expression of your feelings.”
  • “To write, I think it is very important to read. The more you read, the more you know the techniques of writing.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Writing
  • “I like to write and that’s why I write. I don’t think about how much the book will sell.”
  • “It’s lovely to write for the youngsters because through your story, you can teach them the lessons of life.”
  • “For a child everything is wonderful, be it going to a fair or visiting a temple with parents. This happiness and enthusiasm needs to reflect in my writing.”
  • “Though most of my titles are translated into about 7 to 8 languages, I feel that translations, to some extent, can lose the flavour of the colloquial words used otherwise in the regional narrative.”
  • “I believe people from the film industry, musicians, dancers, artists, and writers are all internally connected. The form of expression externally may vary, but we are connected internally.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Books

  • “We can spend Rs 5,000 for a meal at the Taj and thousands on all kinds of shopping, but we’re always stingy about books. We always think of borrowing. Why? Writers can use some support. If you have space and money, you should buy your own books.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Books
  • “If I give someone flowers, what will they really do with it? If I take food, the person could be diabetic… But books are a source of knowledge, I have great thirst for knowledge.”

Sudha Murthy Quotes on Movies

  • “I am a creative person and watching a movie is like writing a story. So when I see a movie, I also see the editing, the music, the camera angles, etc.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Movies
  • “I happily watch movies made on the life and achievement of others.”
  • “If I wasn’t an engineer, I would have been a film journalist.”

Sudhar Murthy Quotes on Politics & Governance

  • “I will continue to work for people, but not from any political party. What I can do do as a Rajya Sabha member, I can do without being a member too, perhaps even more efficiently.”
  • “Increasing the sale of liquor may benefit the government in terms of revenue. But liquor is a social evil, and its biggest victims are women and their children.”
Sudha Murthy Quote on Government
  • “All that I can say is people who represents Karnataka in the Rajya Sabha should speak our language and represent our interests. How can your neighbour safeguard your interests when he cannot even speak your language or understand your difficulties. So, it is better to have our own people.”
  • “For every job, you require a kind of mindset. To be a teacher one should be knowledgeable. To be a software engineer you should know computer data system analysis, computer language, etc. So, my mindset is not aligned with politics.”

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