Politics needs new people, with experience of doing things: Nandan Nilekani

Nilekani said the Congress was in the process of reinventing itself as it has been doing for over 100 years.

Bangalore | Updated: March 10, 2014 10:39 am

After joining the Congress, Nandan Nilekani spoke about his objectives and prospects in this interview to Johnson T A:

On why he has joined the Congress:

I believe the Congress represents all people. It is unity in diversity. The Congress gave me the chance to do the Aadhaar card, which is my idea. My father was a Nehruvian who believed in that ideology. The Congress is going through a lot of change and I want to contribute to change.

On his first impression of politics since campaigning:

I have done business, urban governance, government. This is different. But I am very confident because I see a huge desire for change. People want a new person.

On what he sees going in his favour:

There is a mood for change: people want a new, capable person as leader. They want a leader with experience in areas other than politics. They want a local candidate. I am confident that I will be able to win these elections… I have met so many voters. People are looking for someone who will spend his life looking after Bangalore’s interests and not politicking.

On how he hopes to counter the corruption taint on the party:
Aadhaar is the world’s largest anti-corruption platform with 60 crore cards.

On what he intends to communicate to the people during his campaign:

There is a need for change, need for new people in politics, people with experience of doing things and running things. I have three big experiences. I have been the founder of Infosys, I worked there for 39 years and we created lakhs of jobs. I ran the Aadhar programme which gave India 60 crore Aadhaar cards. For five years I ran the Bangalore Agenda Task Force and got into the nitty-gritty of urban governance — toilets, solid waste management, roads. I bring all these unique experiences. I am a clean candidate and will be contacting people ethically. I am also a local candidate. I am from Bangalore South and have lived here all my life.

On what he has done for Bangalore:

I have done my bit for Bangalore. I was part of the BATF and did a lot of the important reforms in the city.

On how, as a newcomer, he intends to generate support within the local Congress:

I am willing to work with everybody — with national leaders of the Congres, the state president, the chief minister, local MLAs, corporators, block presidents, defeated candidates. I have been meeting everyone and seeking to work with them.

On why he chose to enter politics rather than retire:

I never thought of money as my driver. I really wanted to be of service. Six months ago I decided to join politics.

On changes being attempted in the Congress by Rahul Gandhi:

I know that Mr Rahul Gandhi and the Congress are very serious about changing the party. He is bringing in internal democracy and other things.

On the possibility of him emerging as PM candidate:

Over the next 40 days, my job is to win the Bangalore South constituency for the Congress.

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  1. S
    Aug 6, 2015 at 11:03 pm
    I dont were this msg goes but iam ready to join political . I can do anything for them who needs me . But to be honest I dont havr any money to spend . But I have talent that I can do anytime if u trust me I will show who iam..... this my contact no 9900382020
    1. A
      Mar 10, 2014 at 5:25 am
      Impressive answers obviously he is coached well
      1. A
        Amit Maheshwari
        Mar 10, 2014 at 5:02 am
        Immaterial of him to join Congress, or even get into politics. Why he won't consider the corruption in the last decade primarily or the lack of growth of the country!!
        1. A
          Mar 10, 2014 at 2:48 am
          The biggest land grabbing mafia..joins the most corrupt party in India. One question to nandan how can you deduct charity money from your employees ry and contribute to infosys foundation. Then in case of a natural calamity donate from the fund and state infosys donated the money. Not once I have seen the information that infosys foundation money is contributed by employees and nifty employees donated the money. Why? Is this your moral and ethical comp Nandan?
          1. P
            Prashanth Avanthkar
            Mar 10, 2014 at 4:46 am
            Nandan Nilekani is having good name in Infosys, good people are not to join the hand in politicos in Bangalore people are dont be happy with this think actor, businessman are joining with politicos
            1. C
              Mar 11, 2014 at 3:02 am
              People like nandan must work to change the system.This Starts with electioneering. Instead he is now part of a system that will use black money and liquor to buy votes for him.How disappointing
              1. R
                Mar 10, 2014 at 4:15 am
                From this it is very evident why he got adhar card contract and what use it has been made by congress party?
                1. F
                  Franklin Thomas
                  Mar 10, 2014 at 5:15 am
                  Keep moving towards to reach the goal of giving better governance which can be given only by the Congress party, the current main opposition party didn't do their job for the people elected them instead they continuous blocked the parliament and used the media to damage our countries image globally.
                  1. M
                    Mar 10, 2014 at 4:24 am
                    Still time to change please do not jump into a sinking ship against the will of all the India people !!!
                    1. K
                      Mar 10, 2014 at 3:28 am
                      New things like wasting money on Aadhar, which is being foisted on people?
                      1. V
                        Veera Raghavaiah
                        Mar 10, 2014 at 5:27 am
                        Infosys - 'powered by intellect, driven by values'. Infosys backed by such an intellect and values of supporting Corruptive, divide and ruling congress.
                        1. A
                          Anil Yadav
                          Mar 10, 2014 at 5:24 am
                          Nandan Nilekani for PM ! ! !
                          1. I
                            Indian at
                            Mar 10, 2014 at 5:32 am
                            Best of luck Nandan ! We need clean committed and progressive people in power - hope you win and encourage others like you to enter politics too !
                            1. R
                              Ramanujapuram Krishna
                              Mar 11, 2014 at 3:50 am
                              Joining Congress is the Nadir of ones character. But this was expected the moment Nandan collaborated for the Aadhar project. He will lose badly and hopefully so also the Congress. All the worst Mr Nilekani! I do hope you can redeem yourself in the future.
                              1. R
                                Rakesh Mittal
                                Mar 10, 2014 at 5:29 am
                                NN fits the adage "The more we change, The more we remain same". Visit his Aadhar site. No help line numbers respond, no e-mail is replied, cards are not made available on time. Creating Cyber Coolies industry is same as labor taken to Americas 150 years ago.
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