There is a growing trend towards philanthropy in India and Indian billionaires like Azim Premji are doing pretty phenomenal work in the area, Microsoft founder Bill Gates has said.
Gates, Head of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has donated nearly USD 1 billion in various projects in India in particular in fields related to health, and woman and child welfare.
Considered as a source of inspiration for philanthropists across the world, Gates said he is encouraged by recent trend towards philanthropy in India and commended the example set by billionaire Azim Premji.
"Well, I think Azim Premji and some others are pretty phenomenal in the example they're setting. And they'll do philanthropy, each person in their own unique way," Gates, founder of Microsoft, told PTI.
"I've gotten a chance to meet with philanthropists in India most years at this India Philanthropy Initiative. Some successful people from India have joined The Giving Pledge. We are super excited, and it's a very impressive group of people," Gates said in response to a question.
"So, the fact that philanthropy is very fulfilling, that it can have an impact, I hope that message is getting out there in a way that encourages others to join in," he said.
"I'm quite optimistic that it's going to grow in India quite a bit, certainly at the high end of the people who are super successful, but also hopefully, at other levels of wealth, as well," said Gates, who now heads the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Launched in 2000, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is said to be the largest foundation in the US, holding USD 38 billion in assets. In recognition of the foundation's philanthropic activities, Bill and Melinda Gates in 2015 jointly received the Padma Bhushan award, the third-highest civilian award in India.