The Most powerful Indians in 09

Sunil Mittal,Deepak Parekh,Lakshmi Mittal,A.R. Rahman,

Written by Express News Service | Published:March 9, 2009 3:51 pm

24. Sunil Mittal, 51
Bharti Airtel Chairman
Why
He heads Bharti Enterprises,one of India’s leading business groups with interests in telecom,agri business,insurance and retail. Bharti Airtel,under the leadership of Mittal,has been at the forefront of the telecom revolution and has transformed into the largest mobile phone operator in India with a market value of $25 billion. It has also entered into a joint venture with Wal-Mart to tap the growing retail market in India.
Power punch
He was one of the first Indians to identify the mobile telecom business as a major growth area and launched services in Delhi in 1995.
What next
With the telecom sector going in for 3G technology,Mittal will remain a major player. His insurance venture,in tie-up with Axa,is also expanding.

25. Deepak Parekh, 64
HDFC Chairman
Why
He is the most consulted person in financial matters. He heads several committees on capital markets and infrastructure and is the prime force behind the housing loan culture in India. The government recently appointed him as a director to put scam-hit Satyam Computers on track.
Power punch
Parekh was the first from the business community to raise his voice against the Gujarat riots of 2002. Others mustered the courage after Parekh’s outburst and there was a wave of protests and condemnation from India Inc.
What next
As a director on the Satyam Computers board,there are great expectations from him. The government,regulators and the corporate world will continue to look at Parekh for new ideas and,of course,fire-fighting.

26. Lakshmi Mittal, 59
CEO,ArcelorMittal
Why
The world’s fourth richest man heads the world’s biggest steelmaking company,ArcelorMittal,which has made the first steel columns for Freedom Tower coming up on the site of the WTC twin towers in New York. His neo-Palladian mansion in London is perhaps the most expensive private residence.
Power punch
Mittal Steel’s $34-billion hostile takeover of European steel giant Arcelor in 2006 was an epic. Mittal fought cultural jibes and governmental blockades in a battle that lasted months,eventually winning it.
What next
Mittal’s conquest sent rivals,Japan’s Nippon Steel and Posco of Korea,into building defences against possible hostile bids. Mittal’s expansionary urges are no secret but he can resume them only after the financial crisis which has hit ArcelorMittal hard.

27. A.R. Rahman, 43
Music Composer
Why
Rahman’s very first soundtrack,for Roja,made it to TIME’s list of top 10 movie soundtracks of all time. And there’s no missing his winning streak in 2008: Jodhaa Akbar,Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na,Ghajini and Yuvraaj. Not to forget the biggest cherry on the cake,his Golden Globe for Danny Boyle’s critically acclaimed Slumdog Millionaire. He also won the Critics’ Choice Award and a BAFTA award for his score in the movie.
Power punch
When he got the Golden Globe,he held up the trophy and said,“This is for the one billion people of India.”
What next
Delhi 6 is already being touted as his next big score. His score for Mani Ratnam’s Ravana is also keenly anticipated. Hopefully,he’ll be seen at the Kodak Theatre with the Oscar.

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