The Telegraph
Wednesday , January 29 , 2014
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Gupta and his fall from grace

Rajat Gupta’s journey from Icon to Conman was pieced together before a full house by Anita Raghavan and Sandipan Deb, in conversation with writer Jash Sen.

Both Raghavan’s The Billionaire’s Apprentice and Deb’s Fallen Angel: The Making and Unmaking of Rajat Gupta chart his career from a brilliant IITian to his fall and subsequent imprisonment. Yet, the two books couldn’t have been more different.

“When I was researching for my book on IITians, I had met many famous alumni, including Gupta.... All others opened up to me and let their mask slip at one point. It was only Gupta who had an impenetrable wall around him despite answering all my questions and being courteous,” Deb said. After Gupta’s fall, a friend suggested that he write a book on the enigma.

Raghavan, who worked in The Wall Street Journal for 18 years, got hooked after reading a report on Gupta. “He was known for his philanthropy and would often quote the Gita. But he ran McKinsey on a different principle,” she said.

But was Gupta doing what every Indian does? Was he just plain unlucky? The question brought mixed reactions. “Gupta was the high priest of consulting. In his position he should not have traded inside information,” Raghavan said.

Deb was ready to give Gupta a little more leeway. “It was Gupta’s philanthropy that saved the day for him.”