F. C. Kohli

Faqir Chand Kohli (19 March 1924 – 26 November 2020) was an Indian industrialist. He was the founder and the first CEO of Tata Consultancy Services, India's largest software services company. He was also associated with other companies within the Tata Group including Tata Power Company and Tata Elxsi, and had been a president of the Indian Information Technology (IT) services advocacy body NASSCOM.[1][2]

F. C. Kohli
Born
Faqir Chand Kohli

(1924-03-19)19 March 1924
Died26 November 2020(2020-11-26) (aged 96)
NationalityIndian
EducationUniversity of Punjab (BA, BSc)
Queen's University (BSc)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MSc)
OccupationBusiness executive, industrialist
Known forPioneering contributions to growth of the Indian IT Industry
AwardsPadma Bhushan

He was a recipient of the Padma Bhushan, India's third-highest civilian honor, in 2002 for his contributions to the Indian software industry.[3] He is referred to as the "Father of the Indian IT Industry", for his contributions to the establishment and growth of the Indian IT industry.[4]

Early lifeEdit

Kohli was born in Peshawar (present day Pakistan), British India on 19 March 1924.[5][6] He grew up in Peshawar, which was then a military center, and studied at the Khalsa Middle School, and later at the National High School in the same city.[5] He went on to complete his Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science (Honors) from the Government College for Men, Lahore at the University of the Punjab, Lahore, where he was university gold medalist.[7][8]

After his father's death during his final year of college, he applied to, and was selected by the Indian Navy. However, while waiting to be commissioned, he applied for, and won a scholarship to Queen's University, Canada where he went on to complete his Bachelor of Science (Honors) in Electrical Engineering in 1948.[5] He then worked for a year at the Canadian General Electric Company and subsequently did his MS in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1950.[9][10]

CareerEdit

After completing his master's degree at the MIT, Kohli trained in power system operations at Ebasco International Corporation, New York, Connecticut Valley Power Exchange, Hartford and New England Power Systems, Boston, before returning to India in 1951. He joined the Tata Electric Company where he helped set up a load dispatching system to manage systems operations, before going on to become a general superintendent in 1963, and a deputy general manager in 1967.[11][12]

He went on to work for Tata Consulting Engineers in 1966, before returning to become the director of Tata Electric Company. During this time, he is noted to have introduced the use of digital computers for power system design and control including the use of the CDC 3600 mainframe computer at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research. He also known for the introduction of advanced engineering and management techniques for power system operations.[12][13]

In 1969, he helped set up the Tata Consultancy Services, at the request of J. R. D. Tata, the group chairman, after Tata Electric company installed a computer system to control the power lines between Mumbai and Pune, making it the third utility company in the world to install such a system.[14] After internally serving a few of the Tata Group companies, TCS went on to sign its first contract with Burroughs corporation for software services, in 1972.[14][15] He would go on to become the company's first CEO and also serve as its deputy chairman.[7][12][14] He would lead the company for the next three decades before stepping down as the CEO in 1996.[15][16] The company is the largest Indian IT services company by market capitalization and the most valuable company within the Tata group as of 2020.[16]

He was also associated with other companies within the Tata Group including being on the board of Tata Sons, Tata Industries, Tata Unisys, Tata Electric Company, Tata Honeywell, Tata Technologies Singapore. He had also been the chairman of Tata Elxsi India, and WTI Advanced Technologies.[13] Outside of the Tata Group, he has been a director on the board of Airline Software Development Consultancy India, Airline Financial Support Services India, Abacus Distribution Systems, and Triveni Engineering Works.[13]

He was president and chairman of Indian IT services advocacy body, NASSCOM, between 1995 and 1996.[13] In this role and later as a part of the body's executive committee he helped shape global partnerships and showcase opportunities to delivery IT services from India.[16] He was also associated with professional organizations like the Computer Society of India, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers New York, the Institution of Electrical Engineers, the Indian National Academy of Engineering and the Institute of Management Consultants of India.[11][13]

Kohli also played an important role in advancement of technical education in the country. In 1959, under a request from P. K. Kelkar, the founding director of Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, he helped with the faculty selection and recruitment. He was also associated with College of Engineering, Pune, by pushing for the institute to be granted autonomous institute status, and stayed on as the chairman of the Board of Governors of the institute.[11]

He held executive and leadership roles in professional societies, including being on the board of directors of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) between 1973 and 1974, and was a chairman of the India Council. He had been the President of the Computer Society of India and was the chairman of the Southeast Asia Regional Computer Conference, in Singapore in 1976 and chairman of the Southeast Asia Regional Computer Conference, in New Delhi in 1988. He served the Management Consultants Association of India as a president between 1975 and 1976. He was the chairman of the Institution of Electrical Engineers. He went on to serve the Southeast Asia Regional Computer Confederation as a special advisor in 1989.[13]

After his retirement he continued to remain connected with technology advocacy and was known to have driven efforts toward adult literacy, water purification, and regional language computing efforts, in addition to being involved with TCS in an advisory role.[17][18]

He is referred to as the father of the Indian IT industry, for his role in setting up the Indian IT services industry and contributing to its growth to being a $190 billion industry.[16] He is recognized for grooming a generation of professionals who would go on to become leaders of the industry.[14][19]

HonoursEdit

In 2002, Kohli was awarded the Padma Bhushan, India's third-highest civilian honour, for his contribution to the Indian software industry.[20] He was awarded honorary degrees from Shiv Nadar University, University of Waterloo, Canada,[7] Robert Gordon University in Scotland, IIT Bombay, IIT Kanpur, Jadavpur University, Queen's University and University of Roorkee.[1] He was a fellow of IEEE US, IEE UK, Institution of Engineers India, and the Computer Society of India among others.[7]

Other awards and honours:

Personal lifeEdit

Kohli was married to his wife Swarn, a consumer-rights activist and lawyer, and had three children.[25][5] He died on 26 November 2020 of a heart attack. He was aged 96.[26][27][28]

Positions heldEdit

Source(s): [13][29]

Company Name Position Year
Tata Infotech Limited Director 1977
Bradma of India Limited Director 1982
WTI Advanced Technology Limited Chairman 1988
Tata Elxsi (I) Limited Director 1989
Tata Technologies (Pte) Limited, Singapore. Director 1991
Triveni Engineering Works Limited Director 1994
HOTV Inc., US. Director 1999
Engineering Analysis Center of Excellence Pvt. Limited Director 1999
eBIZ Solutions Limited Director 1999
Edutech Informatics India (P) Limited Director 2000
Technosoft SA, Switzerland Director 2000
Sun F&C Asset Management (I) Pvt. Limited Director 2000
Aerospace Systems Pvt. Limited Director 2000
Media Lab Asia Limited Director 2002

BooksEdit

  • Kohli, F. C. (2012). The IT Revolution in India. Rupa Publication India Pvt Ltd. ISBN 9798129108127.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "F C Kohli, Founder of TCS @ Rotman". Business Week. Archived from the original on 10 November 2006. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
  2. ^ "Cognizant rising by Chennai beach". Archived from the original on 17 March 2014. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  3. ^ "FC Kohli, founder of TCS and father of India's IT industry passes away at 96". The New Indian Express. Archived from the original on 26 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  4. ^ "FC Kohli, father of Indian IT industry, passes away". Deccan Herald. 26 November 2020. Archived from the original on 26 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d Bhattrai, Sushmita (15 January 2020). "Two Countries, Two Lives". Seniors Today. Archived from the original on 19 September 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  6. ^ Baruah, Ayushman (26 November 2020). "FC Kohli, doyen of Indian IT, dies". mint. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  7. ^ a b c d "Personality of the Issue - Mr. F. C. Kohli". IEEE Bombay Section. 1 March 2002. Archived from the original on 24 November 2002. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  8. ^ "Dr. Faqir Chand Kohli".
  9. ^ "India's IT Guy As director of Tata Consultancy Services, F. C. Kohli, SM '50, launched the Indian IT outsourcing industry". Retrieved 5 June 2013.
  10. ^ "IT Industrialist & India's largest software exporter, FC Kohli has died at the age of 96". Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  11. ^ a b c Shinde, Shivani (4 February 2015). "40 Years ago... and now- Faqir Chand Kohli: The original Indian techie". Business Standard India. Archived from the original on 30 July 2019. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  12. ^ a b c "DR. FAQIR CHAND KOHLI" (PDF). Retrieved 5 June 2013.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g "F C Kohli". Rediff. Retrieved 5 June 2013.
  14. ^ a b c d Chandrashekhar, Anandi. "FC Kohli, first CEO of TCS and father of Indian IT industry, passes away at 96". The Economic Times. Archived from the original on 26 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  15. ^ a b Roy, Subir (1 January 2005). Made in India: A Study of Emerging Competitiveness. Tata McGraw-Hill Education. ISBN 978-0-07-048366-8. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  16. ^ a b c d "F.C. Kohli, father of Indian IT industry, passes away". The Hindu. Special Correspondent. 26 November 2020. ISSN 0971-751X. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.CS1 maint: others (link)
  17. ^ "F.C. Kohli | Indian businessman and engineer". Encyclopedia Britannica. Archived from the original on 17 May 2019. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  18. ^ ANI. "FC Kohli made pioneering efforts to develop IT industry: Ravi Shankar Prasad". BW Businessworld. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  19. ^ Kambhampati, Uma S. (1 January 2002). "The software industry and development: the case of India". Progress in Development Studies. 2 (1): 23–45. doi:10.1191/1464993402ps028ra. ISSN 1464-9934. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  20. ^ "Padma Awards Directory (1954-2013)" (PDF). India Ministry of Home Affairs. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  21. ^ TCS's F.C. Kohli gets honoured
  22. ^ "Dr F C Kohli conferred ET lifetime achievement award". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 6 August 2015.
  23. ^ "FC Kohli Center on Intelligent Systems". Archived from the original on 27 November 2020.
  24. ^ "All India Management Association - 2017 Awards". www.aima.in. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  25. ^ Krishna, Jayant. "FC Kohli: A Lifetime of Repaying Gratitude to India". BW Businessworld. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  26. ^ "India's IT sector pioneer FC Kohli dead". Reeba Zachariah. The Times of India. 27 November 2020. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  27. ^ "Founder and first CEO of Tata Consultancy Services FC Kohli passes away". CNBC TV18. 26 November 2020. Archived from the original on 27 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  28. ^ "FC Kohli, founder of TCS and father of India's IT industry passes away at 96". The New Indian Express. Archived from the original on 26 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  29. ^ "FC Kohli, father of Indian IT industry, passes away". Deccan Herald. 26 November 2020. Archived from the original on 26 November 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2020.

External linksEdit