Chak de phatte! That was Vineet Nayyar\u2019s triumphant response to reporters\u2019 queries after Tech Mahindra snapped up Satyam Computers. It was the summer of 2009. Nayyar may have been a bureaucrat for much of his life but in that moment he was an entrepreneur. It had taken him just 10 slides to convince the Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M) board to throw its hat in the ring; in the very last one he went for the kill. It said: \u201cWe simply cannot afford to not buy Satyam.\u201d If convincing M&M was hard, it was even harder to convince Satyam\u2019s clients to stay on. In a somewhat frightening environment post-Lehman, trust levels had plunged, litigation loomed large and no one was taking chances. In a matter of weeks, a bunch of BFSI clients had cancelled contracts. But Nayyar, as everyone knows, is a cool customer. The company may have been losing its bread and butter but with cups and cups of coffee to keep him going, he rebuilt the team. That was not easy at a time when lateral attrition in the IT industry was high and when engineers were more likely to opt for an Infosys or a Wipro at campus recruitments. Also read|\u00a0How big is Paytm Mall\u2019s loss? It is bigger than govt\u2019s bullet train budget for this year A younger man would have been daunted by the task but even at 70 he was unfazed, confident Satyam\u2019s awesome ability to deliver would do the trick. We don\u2019t know what his mother fed him for breakfast but we do know what he has for lunch: an hour of cardio and light weights. \u201cWe would meet companies and ask them for another chance. Don\u2019t throw us out, we would say.\u201d Some of them did but newer ones signed on and by December, 2009, JP Morgan had put an overweight rating on the Satyam stock in anticipation of a turnaround over the next 12 months. By March of the following year, brokerages who had abandoned coverage were forced to relook the company. Five years later, by March 2015, Tech Mahindra had done revenues of close to Rs 22,500 crore, last March these were Rs 30,773 crore. It was hard work, but Nayyar didn\u2019t mind. \u201cI wish I could say I have a hobby but most of the time it\u2019s work,\u201d he says. As an IAS officer he enjoyed overseeing the digging of bore wells and building of roads. That was 50 years ago. Nayyar and wife Reva run a couple of high schools for under-privileged children \u2014 one in Delhi and the other in Lonavla. He had hoped to be able to devote more time to the venture but the government has roped him to help out with IL&FS. There\u2019s no putting him to pasture.