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India visit on Jobs’ advice saved Facebook: Mark Zuckerberg

By NewsGram staff writer

New Delhi: At an event on Sunday, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Facebook Inc founder Mark Zuckerberg told stories of their life which inspired them to become what they are today.

“India is personally very important to the history of our company,” Zuckerberg said at Facebook’s headquarters in California. He said when he was considering whether to sell the company or not, Apple Inc founder Steve Jobs suggested to visit a temple in India “in order to reconnect with what I believed was the mission of the company”.

Zuckerberg did not mention the name of the temple but said Steve visited the same when he was planning the future of Apple.

“And so I went and I traveled for almost a month,” said Zuckerberg. “Seeing the people, seeing how people connected, having the opportunity to feel how much better the world could be if everyone had a stronger ability to connect reinforced for me the importance of what we were doing and that is something that I have always remembered over the last 10 years as we have built Facebook.”

Modi said in response, “I think people all across the world will be pretty surprised to hear what you said today Mark and I hope that the inspiration you got and the inspiration that helped you to start what you started.”

“You did ask the question why there is a lot of optimism when people talk about India and what do I think about that. When you went to India you visited a temple with a lot of hopes, and look to where you have reached.”

“I hope that will not just be something to enhance your company’s bank balance I hope that you will be the voice of millions and billions of people all over the world,” Modi added.

Zuckerberg asked Modi to talk about his mother. While doing so with all honesty and sincerity, he came close to tears.

“When we were small, what we used to do to get by,” Modi said, before a long pause, “We used to go to our neighbors’ houses nearby, we used to clean the dishes, fill water.”

With chocking voice, he added, “So you can imagine what a mother had to do, what a mother had to do to raise her children, what she must have gone through.”

In India, he said, this sacrifice is done by thousands of mothers and it is their hallmark.

“It is not what you become that a mother is going to want or wish for, it’s how you become that,” Modi said. Concluding his Q&A event he said, “Thank you ma.”

After the event, Zuckerberg posted on his official Facebook page describing childhood’s stories of Modi and his mother’s impact on his life as “deeply moving and inspiring” and “the most amazing moment”.

 

(With quotes from The Wall Street Journal)

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