Rathinam College
Vol 5 Issue 16, Apr 18 - 24, 2014
    Citizen Reporters      |   | Submit Story
Green WarriorsSocial EntrepreneursUnsung Heroes

Adored by millions, Capt Gopinath is a man of many faces

   By  Sudha Narasimhachar
   Bengaluru
24 Apr 2014
Posted 27-Aug-2010
Vol 0 Issue 0

"I reared cattle to sell milk, got into poultry farming, silkworm farming, then turned a motor cycle dealer, an Udipi hotel owner, a stock broker, an irrigation equipment dealer, an agricultural consultant, a politician and finally an aviation entrepreneur - struggling, falling, rising, falling, rising again and taking off."

If these lines give you a sense of déjà vu do not bother. They are from the book ‘Simply Fly’, the autobiography of business baron Captain Gorur Ramaswamy Iyengar Gopinath.

But then, those lines do not speak about one thing that Capt Gopinath, as he is popularly known, did in his life – one of his passions that earned him the title ‘Captain’.

After completing his primary schooling in a small village of Gorur in Hassan District, Karnataka, Gopinath joined the Sainik School, Bijapur and most naturally entered the National Defence Academy.  

Courage to take risks was one of
Captain’s secrets of success

Subsequently, as a logical progression, he was commissioned in the army and served for eight years. It was only after he retired from military service as a ‘Captain’ that he tried out all those things that he himself has listed in his inspiring autobiography. But he did not chuck any of those professions he had mentioned because he failed in them – but because his busy mind was always thinking of another interesting venture, which he could not but try.

He became a household name only after he started Deccan Aviation, which made flying a possibility for the common middle-class man. Millions benefited from the man’s dream. However, his life from the beginning is inspiring and worth emulating.  Born among eight children to a school teacher in Gorur village, Gopinath has today risen to national and international fame, purely by his untiring hunger for innovation and creativity.  Whatever he did, he tried to innovate and improvise.  He was a pioneer in introducing silk-worm farming to the farmers of Hassan District, so that they could increase their earnings.  The famed Kannada writer Gorur Ramaswamy Iyengar happens to be his mother’s maternal uncle.

‘Simply Fly’ gives a gripping account of the Captain’s journey from Gorur village to Bangalore, as the founder of the revolutionary Deccan Aviation Company, which changed the whole concept that flying is a luxury.  Flying now has become a ‘commodity’ just like any other commodity, in Captain’s own words.  

Even after he sold off ‘Deccan Air’, people remember him as the man who brought flying down to earth. He has said that the idea of a low-cost airline struck him when he was at the Phoenix airport on transit. On realizing that the airport handled 1,000 flights and 100,000 passengers a day, he wondered how it could be. An airport in the middle of a desert, handling more flights and passengers than all of India's 40 airports together at that point of time made him ponder. But not just being amazed, he found inspiration in that fact and went ahead with the dream after meeting two old friends – both being helicopter pilots in the army. The predecessor to Air Deccan was a helicopter charter company. Well, he never looked back again. Perhaps he might strike again with another idea to capture the imagination of the Indian middle-class. But knowing from him, how he made it in life and what he plans to do is amazing.


Full Article: Captain Speak

Print  |  Email  | 
 Share   

You might also like:

Express(ing) love

Love travelled miles, in lightning speed, crossing seas and mountains, in the form of flowers from Mexico to Haridwar in time to reach Laura Cantu on her birthday. A real life love story

Read More

Green prisons

In what is being billed as a pioneering initiative, all 52 jails in Kerala will go green in the next 4 months with the state government undertaking a Rs.25.50 crore solar power project

Read More

Stephen Cars
FPJs Meet Vidyaakar
adyar bakery
 
TWL Campaign



Popular Stories

Benign borrow

Entire India will soon come under the cover of Arogya Finance that lends money for the poor to go for medical treatment. Supported by social venture funds, Arogya is in nine States and has helped over 400 persons, says Kavita Kanan Chandra

Read More

Pet project

‘Rickshaw Bank’ is a project that helps rickshaw pullers. It was born out of a conversation Pradip Kumar Sarmah, a veterinarian, who had taken animal health care to rural areas in Assam, had with a rickshaw puller, says Souzeina S Mushtaq

Read More

Power of waste

Namakkal in Tamil Nadu is known for poultry, among other things. But not many know of a poultry owner generating electricity from chicken droppings, whose disposal was once a headache. P C Vinoj Kumar explains the innovation and the business

Read More

Action cop

His was a career dedicated to fight graft, through unconventional methods. Now the former cop is advisor to the anti-corruption cell of Aam Aadmi Party. Souzeina S Mushtaq profiles N Dilip Kumar, called as ‘action hero’ by a news magazine

Read More

Natives’ return

The return of Sabbah Haji and her family to their hometown in Kashmir’s Doda district has helped local children as the school started in 2009 is still growing. Afsana Rashid finds the school running with the help of volunteers from outside

Read More

Short and strong

Joby Mathew stands 3 feet, 5 inches tall. But he has beaten men taller than him in arm wrestling and won even the world championship. Kavita Kanan Chandra finds that hard work, discipline and determination are the secrets behind his success

Read More

At the grassroots

A group of social workers in the temple town of Kanchipuram meet every week to chart their down to earth projects. All of them teetotalers, not by scheme, they work at the grassroots level but seek no external aid. P C Vinoj Kumar meets them

Read More

Bangalore 15

Besides being a cosmopolitan city, which is a bustling IT hub, also known for fine weather, Bangalore has more for a visitor, says Sudha Narasimhachar, giving a list of 15 must visit places

Read More

Mountain girl

In the chilly heights of Ladakh, Thinlas Chorol stands out as a social entrepreneur, trekking guide, ice hockey player and a writer rolled into one. Her remarkable role is changing the face of tourism up there, says Kavita Kanan Chandra

Read More

Water Wheel

Fetching water takes such considerable time for rural women that they expend most of their time and energy on that. But ‘Water Wheel’, a recent innovation, is ushering a change in the lives of women in some villages, says Souzeina S Mushtaq

Read More
 
Kudos image

"The Weekend Leader not only gives a glimpse of the better things happening around us but also tells stories of people who made it possible.”

Ajay Chaturvedi, Entrepreneur More Kudos
 
Archives  |   Columns  |   About Us  |   Contact Us  |   Feedback  |   Response  |     |   Cheers!  |   Support Us  |   Friends of Positive Journalism
© Copyright The Weekend Leader.com, 2010. All rights reserved.