“Mind Without Fear” is the tale of Rajat Gupta’s rise and fall from the pinnacle of his career as the first foreign-born person to lead Mckinsey & Co to write this memoir from a cell in jail after being convicted for insider trading. Invoking Tagore right from the title, Gupta stirs his audiences with his inspiring life of breaking the glass ceiling right from a young age where he lost his father and soon after his mother, making him responsible for the lives of his younger siblings. Despite these familial adversities, he rises like a phoenix from the ashes with a full scholarship to Harvard Business School after a degree in Engineering from the prestigious IIT Delhi.
Mind Without Fear (Review)
His deeply inspiring career trajectory is one that grips the imagination of perhaps every young adult who aspires to carve a successful career path and make a mark for themselves. Rajat Gupta belongs to the class of those first-generation Indians who pushed the glass ceiling in a white-dominated world as early as the 1970s, even before India saw itself meet the global market. It is this fascinating story of success, hard work, and finally, a fall that makes his story intriguing, and this book an integral part in understanding the context of his arrest in 2014 that sent ripples throughout the world and not just amongst the Indian community.
One wonders how Rajat Gupta, with the same number of hours that every human being has managed to carve a space for himself not only at the leading consulting firm, McKinsey, but also advised the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation while working on global humanitarian and health initiatives to eradicate TB, AIDS, Malaria, set up India’s premier Indian School of Business, liaising with the Indian government to launch the Public Health Foundation of India, and serving on the boards of World Economic Forum, Proctor & Gamble, and Goldman Sachs. It is these aspects that compel one to read Gupta’s narrative.
The Anarchy of Destiny
A recurring core ideal that leaps through the pages of the book is the notion of meritocracy and sheer handwork trumping all adverse circumstances in Gupta’s life that motivates one to persevere. However, one begins to also grapple with questions on luck and fate that Gupta terms as the ‘Anarchy of Destiny’ in his chapter and also compels the reader to take cognizance of him being a victim of circumstances when he got embroiled in the Sri Lankan Tycoon Rajaratnam’s case of insider trading. Through his words, Rajat Gupta brings alive his purely business dynamic with Rajaratnam that was not at its best but was construed to partake in illegal business sharing information and, therefore, the term anarchy of destiny projecting the unfairness and inability to mold outcome in the hands of fate.
Person of Colours Burden in a White Man’s world
In the wake of the Lehman brother’s collapse, Rajat Gupta’s arrest shook the corporate world when he was arrested and later convicted for insider trading in 2012; it is here where Preet Bharara, the Indian origin Prosecutors involvement becomes interesting because Gupta terms it a “witch hunt” to blame for the economic crisis. One wonders while reading if Bharara’s Indian-ness compelled him to prove his allegiance to the American Flag to consolidate his position in the Legal world, in case one is to ever assume that Gupta’s version of events has salt to it. The compelling nature of this burden seems to point to a larger issue of personal ambition and systemic racism that pushed Bharara to act as he did.
The recent internet rage “Bad Boy Billionaires” is reflective of the collective society’s obsession with exciting, scintillating tales of these “bad boys” who went from the peak of their careers to public shame, “Mind Without Fear” is one such story that tries to dispel the “bad boy” from this “billionaire.” The book compels you to think through various themes of justice, fate, handwork, and more importantly, it is a tale of a life fully lived that meets fated tragedy but inspires through its written and unwritten word. You can get the book here! 📖
Mind Without Fear
"Mind Without Fear" is the tale of Rajat Gupta's rise and fall from the pinnacle of his career as the first foreign-born person to lead Mckinsey & Co to write this memoir from a cell in jail after being convicted for insider trading. Invoking Tagore right from the title, Gupta stirs his audiences with his inspiring life of breaking the glass ceiling right from a young age where he lost his father and soon after his mother, making him responsible for the lives of his younger siblings. Despite these familial adversities, he rises like a phoenix from the ashes with a full scholarship to Harvard Business School after a degree in Engineering from the prestigious IIT Delhi.
Author: Rajat Gupta
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