'Indians Should Work 60 Hours A Week For Next 2-3 Years To Fast-Track Economic Revival': Narayana Murthy

Talking about India’s testing capacity, Murthy said, “We have not been able to ramp up our testing ability. Even if we are able to test one lakh people a day, we would take 37 years to cover the entire population.”

India   |   1 May 2020 7:13 AM GMT
Writer : Reethu Ravi | Editor : Prateek Gautam | Creatives : Abhishek M
Indians Should Work 60 Hours A Week For Next 2-3 Years To Fast-Track Economic Revival: Narayana Murthy

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the world economy has taken a serious hit. Amid a slew of measures to revive the economy, Indians would have to work 60 hours a day for the next 2-3 years, Infosys co-founder NR Narayana Murthy said in an interview on ET Now.

"We should take a pledge that we will work ten hours a day, six days a week - as against 40 hours a week - for the next 2-3 years so that we can fast-track and grow the economy much faster. On the side of the government, they should appoint a committee of well-respected and accomplished people to advise them on how to remove hassles for these businesses, like during the economic reforms of 1991. If we did these two, by and large, we will come out of this much stronger," Murthy said.

He said that to open up factories, he would consider factors based on data on who is more vulnerable to the virus. Furthermore, he added that companies should adopt measures to protect their employees.

"We could operate three shifts in a one or two shift company to improve social distancing. We could use gowns, masks, gloves, goggles for low risk employees to attend factories. I would have made an analysis and said, let the less vulnerable work with protective gear and let elderly people work from home or from their own offices," he said.

"Let data lead us to the decisions, we should not rely on opinions," Murthy added.

Murthy further said that it was important to define productivity standards to work from home.

"The need of the hour is to improve productivity. While it is a great idea to say that we'll all work from home, unless there is a clear productivity standard that we have defined, unless every one of us is asked to achieve that productivity standard, [work from home] won't work. First let every industry – finance, information technology, etc. – define productivity standards for work from home. Once this is defined for each designation, then you can work from anywhere you want," he said.

Talking about India's testing capacity, Murthy said, "We have not been able to ramp up our testing ability. Even if we are able to test one lakh people a day, we would take 37 years to cover the entire population."

He added that there is no vaccine in sight or if it will work on Indian genes. Given these complex situations, Murthy said, Indians would have to learn to live with coronavirus for the next 12-18 months.

"In such a complex situation, we should assume that the new normal is to live with coronavirus. We should start doing whatever we were doing before the coronavirus came… in other words, protect the most vulnerable," he said.

Also Read: Hunger May Kill More People Than COVID-19 If Lockdown Continues: Infosys Founder Narayana Murthy

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