Jan 15, 2009

India - Satyam Chief;Nostalgia in the thick of confession

A. Saye Sekhar

HYDERABAD: The former chairman of Satyam Computers, B. Ramalinga Raju, had an opportunity, in the thick of the controversy he courted, to recall his humble past.

He was not writing an autobiography but making a confessional statement before the CID of the Andhra Pradesh police after his arrest on January 9. Mr. Raju recollected his childhood, adolescence, adulthood, avatar as industrialist and his metamorphosis as the head honcho of an IT behemoth.

Born on September 16, 1955 at Garagaparru village in Bhimavaram mandal in West Godavari district to the Byrraju Satyanarayana Raju couple, he studied up to Standard III at Bhimavaram.

He then went to school in Machilipatnam in Krishna district where he studied up to Standard VI. He moved over to Hyderabad to study up to Standard IX and returned to his native district to pursue Standard X at Yendakandiga.
College education

Mr. Raju joined the prestigious Andhra Loyola College in Vijayawada for Intermediate and continued there until he completed his B.Com degree. He was, in fact, one of the few celebrities felicitated by the Loyola institutions along with their proud alumni, including Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy and cardiologist B. Somaraju, a few years ago.

Crossing the shores, Mr. Raju did MBA at Ohio University and completed executive programmes in business administration at Harvard, U.S.

While Mr. Raju is the eldest of four siblings, the third is B. Rama Raju, co-accused in the Satyam case. B. Suryanarayana Raju is the second and the youngest is a sister, A. Rajeswari.

Married to Nandini in 1977, Mr. Raju has two sons — B. Teja Raju (vice-chairman of Maytas Infra) and B. Rama Raju (vice-chairman of Maytas Properties).
Meteoric rise

Real estate and construction have been his first love, as he himself admitted in one of his recent statements.

Complementing these were the initial ventures of Dhanunjaya Hotels and Satyam Spinning Mills, which are no longer part of his businesses. Establishing Satyam Computers in a house in P&T Colony in Secunderabad in 1987, he saw its meteoric rise through.

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