For the first fifteen years after my return from the US, I was busy in my companies. There were times when I considered what a person like me could do to make India great. Somewhere along the line, I started writing. But that was about it. India needed to be transformed and I thought that the answer to everything was technology.
In Jan 2009, a quirky set of circumstances led to me to meet a senior person from the BJP. I spoke to him about the lack of ‘disruptive thinking’ in the party. Coming just after the tragic incident of 26/11 in Mumbai and Obama’s election in the US, I was frustrated by what I was seeing in the country. Elections were near, and there was an opportunity to change India’s future.
Out of that one accidental meeting arose a group – the Friends of BJP – with the objective of getting Middle India politically engaged. Elections were just around the corner. In February-March of 2009, it appeared that the BJP had an opportunity to win and perhaps put India on a different track from the Congress. For the few of us who worked through those months before the elections, travelling across India trying to get more people engaged to think about the country, it was a mission of Change. We were a start-up, heedless of the impossibility of the mission.
Continued on Monday.