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Azim Premji's life mantra: Wealth is a trusteeship, shouldn't be used as ownership

The 73-yr-old announced that he is giving 34% of his shares in Wipro to charity.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Mar 14, 2019, 12.57 PM IST
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IT czar and philanthropist Azim Premji has been bestowed with the highest French civilian distinction Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur (Knight of the Legion of Honour) The chairman of Wipro received the distinction for his contribution to developing the IT industry in India, his economic outreach in France, and his contribution to society. The Legion d'Honneur (Legion of Honour), instituted in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, is the highest civilian award given by the French Republic for outstanding service to France, regardless of the nationality of the recipients.
IT czar and philanthropist Azim Premji has been bestowed with the highest French civilian distinction Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur (Knight of the Legion of Honour) The chairman of Wipro received the distinction for his contribution to developing the IT industry in India, his economic outreach in France, and his contribution to society. The Legion d'Honneur (Legion of Honour), instituted in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, is the highest civilian award given by the French Republic for outstanding service to France, regardless of the nationality of the recipients.
Azim Premji, on Wednesday, announced a fresh bequest to the Azim Premji Foundation, boosting his total commitment to Rs 1.45 lakh crore ($21 billion), making it one of the five largest private endowments in the world and the biggest in Asia. India’s most generous billionaire announced that all earnings from approximately 34% shares of Wipro would be transferred to his eponymous philanthropic initiative. This has cemented the 73-year-old billionaire’s place alongside the world’s most influential philanthropists including Bill Gates, George Soros and Warren Buffett.

In 2017, Wipro chairman Azim Premji received the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy during a ceremony held at the New York Public Library. A couple of years ago, Premji became the first Indian to sign the Giving Pledge, sponsored by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, an invitation to the world's wealthiest to donate a majority of their wealth to charity.

As he accepted the honour in NYC, Premji said, "When one is showered [with] wealth beyond what one deserves, I think the question really arises, what does one really do with this wealth? I was guided by the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi, which said that wealth is a trusteeship and it should not be used as ownership."

He added that his family - wife Yasmeen and sons, Tariq and Rishad - have been pillars of support in his philanthropic journey. At that time, Premji had committed 50 per cent of his stake in Wipro for philanthropic purposes, with a special focus on education.

Azim Premji's life mantra: Wealth is a trusteeship, shouldn't be used as ownership
Rishad and Yasmeen Premji.

Azim Premji Conferred With Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur; Other Indians Who Received The...

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Another Feather In The Cap

28 Nov, 2018
IT czar and philanthropist Azim Premji has been bestowed with the highest French civilian distinction Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur (Knight of the Legion of Honour) The chairman of Wipro received the distinction for his contribution to developing the IT industry in India, his economic outreach in France, and his contribution to society. The Legion d'Honneur (Legion of Honour), instituted in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, is the highest civilian award given by the French Republic for outstanding service to France, regardless of the nationality of the recipients.
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