Father of India’s IT industry Faqir Chand Kohli passes away at 96

Father of India’s IT industry Faqir Chand Kohli passes away at 96

Faqir Chand Kohli

Bengaluru Nov 26,2020Faqir Chand Kohli or FC Kohli, often referred as the Father of the Indian software industry passed away at the age of 96 on Thursday. He was the founder and first CEO of India’s largest software exporter TCS and was credited as a visionary who always looked at the next frontier and put India on the global map for software services. 

“F C Kohli was a visionary who created and shaped an industry that transformed every facet of India. Multiple generations of men and women in India owe it to him for nurturing the IT industry that created millions of high-quality jobs, put India on the global map, and most importantly, helped believe in the power of technology to solve societal challenges,” said Ramkumar Ramamoorthy, former chairman of Cognizant India who has worked with FC Kohli in TCS and had interacted closely with him over the decades. 

“He was always looking at the next frontier. He started talking about computing in Indian languages in the nineties and his perpetual grouse was that we are doing nothing for electronics hardware,” former Nasscom chairman Ganesh Natarajan said.

FC Kohli was born in Peshawar  British India on 19th March 1924. He did his schooling in Peshawar and did his BA and BSc (Hons) at the Government College for Men in Lahore from Punjab University, Lahore, where he was university gold medalist He went to Queen’s University, Canada and completed his BSc (Hons) in Electrical Engineering in 1948. 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 in 1950.

He returned to India in early August 1951, and joined Tata Electric Companies  In September 1969, he became the general manager of Tata Consultancy Services. In 1974, he was made the director-in-charge and in 1994 deputy chairman of TCS. TCS was established in 1968 with its headquarters in Mumbai and F C Kohli was appointed as the first CEO. He was president of NASSCOM for 1995–96.