1995 was the year of the Internet – the start of the Internet as we know it now. By the end of 1994, Mosaic (later to be renamed as NetScape) browser was available and DNS service had simplified the URLs. Until then it was mostly used by companies and universities to do email and file transfers. It was a crude but very useful tool –¬†although not ready for prime time. Most people used Internet at the office or dialed office to get on the Internet from home. Incidentally modems of that vintage were lightning fast: 9600 baud (roughly bit per seconds). I had started with modems at 300 bauds way back when. Most of the eighties they were 1200 baud. Most communication was textual. 9600 bauds meant that 800 characters transferred per second. Today’s home connections are easily 1000X. My home connection now downloads at 50 MBS (million bits per second)!

1987 started with a bang. The stock market had been surging. Dow crossed 2000 for the first time. Microsoft and Sun MicroSystems had gone public in 1986.

DOT Hatao, Desh Bachao: Get rid of the Dept of Telecom to save the country

This was my clarion call to reform telecom sector. PM Vajpayee after taking the oath for the office in the fall of 1998 talked about IT as India’s Tomorrow. I got inspired and requested a meeting. In that meeting I told PM that if he thinks IT industry is India’s future then he has to do a couple of things quickly. A strong industry can not be built on a third world telecom infra-structure that India had at the time. I also told him that he also has to allow a VC industry to emerge in India.