Founder & CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, at Taj Mahal in Agra, Oct. 27. (Press Trust of India)
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg began his trip to India, Oct. 27, with a visit to the Taj Mahal in Agra and described it as “even more stunning” than he had expected. He also hosted a townhall at IIT Delhi.
Zuckerberg, who arrived in India to deepen links with a country that is home to the largest number of Facebook users outside the U.S., said he had “always wanted to see” the Taj Mahal.
“I’m in India for our Townhall Q&A tomorrow, and I decided to visit the Taj Mahal. I’ve always wanted to see this,” he said in his Facebook post.
He described the country’s most-photographed and photogenic monument as “even more stunning than I expected.
It’s incredible what people can build—and what love can motivate us to build.”
He also posted picture of him sitting infront of the Taj Mahal that was built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in the 1600s.
Within couple of hours, his Taj Mahal post had received over 450,000 likes, 11,000 comments and 7,700 shares.
Zuckerberg hosted a townhall Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi where around 900 students attended the Q&A session.
India is home to over 130 million users, making it the second largest user base for the world’s largest social networking site after the U.S.
Before coming to India, he delivered a 20-minute speech in Mandarin at Tsinghua University in China.
The young billionaire, who is married to Chinese-American Priscilla Chan, had set himself the goal of learning Mandarin in 2010.
After his speech, he shared his accomplishment with his followers on Facebook along with a video of the speech with English subtitles.
“I just gave my first ever speech in Chinese at Tsinghua University in Beijing—on why you need a strong sense of mission to change the world.
“This was also my first real speech in any language sharing how I started thinking about Facebook’s mission, what has kept me going through challenging times and what our mission means now looking ahead for our community of 1.5 billion people,” he wrote.
Zuckerberg had joined the board of Tsinghua’s School of Economics and Management last year. He had last month conversed with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Mandarin at a meeting with technology chiefs in the U.S.
Facebook is banned in mainland China and remains untapped for Facebook that has over 1.3 billion users globally.
Tech can help build superpowers: Zuckerberg
Facebook CEO and caped crusader Batman have one thing in common—both believe technology is a superpower.
Speaking to students at IIT Delhi, at the Townhall, the young billionaire was asked what is the one super power he would want to help people.
Dressed in his signature grey T-shirt and jeans, Zuckerberg replied, “One of the great things about technology is that you can build superpowers for people in the world and that some of the stuff that is really exciting.”
Citing the example of virtual technology Oculus, he said this could allow people to “teleport.”
“You will be able to put on a headset and go anywhere in the world, play ping pong with somebody in some other part of the world. That is pretty crazy… that is going to be pretty good,” he said.
While there were times when the audience grilled him about issues like net neutrality and how the world’s largest social networking platform intends to connect billions, they also wanted to know if the unwanted invitations from Candy Crush would stop.
“We’re working on a solution to address that,” replied Zuckerberg to the question that has been the most voted by users.
Troubled by unwanted invitations to play Candy Crush on Facebook, users have complained and even started online petitions to block the invites.
He also talked about being passionate about what one wants to do with their startups and asked the youngsters to focus on solving issues they saw rather than just “starting a business.”
Zuckerberg also talked about his wife and how he was looking forward to their daughter’s arrival.