91. C.B. Bhave,57
Bhave is responsible for regulating Indias stock markets,mutual funds,foreign funds,public offerings and various market intermediaries. He also has the job of safeguarding the interests of small investors and various systems in the marketplace.
He set up the first depositoryNational Securities Depository Ltdin the country in 1996,thereby ushering in paperless trading at a time when some developed markets were struggling to introduce such a system.
With no dearth of scamsters in the capital market,Bhave is expected to be as alert as ever. He will be fine-tuning the regulations depending on the circumstances,the market situation and global changes. SEBIs probe into the Satyam scam is also keenly awaited.
92. Kumar Mangalam Birla,41
Aditya Birla Group chief
The chairman of the $28 billion Aditya Birla Groupwhich is into aluminium,fibre,textiles,cement and telecomis a corporate icon. He also holds several key positions on various regulatory and professional boards. He is a director with the central board of directors of the Reserve Bank of India.
He has extended the groups operations to Thailand,Indonesia,Malaysia,Philippines,Egypt,Canada,China,Laos,USA,UK and Australia. He has invested in telecom and acquired several high-profile companies in India and abroad.
Pundits predict that Kumar Birla is yet to reach the pinnaclethat hes set to scale greater heights. Birla is always on the lookout for more acquisitions,greenfield projects and expansions. This year could see some of those.
93. Parkash Singh Badal,81
Punjab Chief Minister
In his fourth term as chief minister of Punjab,Parkash Singh Badal holds undisputed sway over Akali politics. Although he gave up the presidentship of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) to his son Sukhbir Singh Badal,who has also been recently appointed deputy chief minister,the elder Badal retains the final say in all crucial matters,including elections to the cash-rich Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) and the appointments of jathedars.
After his comeback as chief minister for the third time in 1997,Badal presided over all three centres of power in Punjabpresident of SAD,chief minister and had complete control over the SGPC.
The SAD banks on Badal Senior to lead the campaign for the next Lok Sabha elections in the state.
94. Bal Thackeray,83
Shiv Sena chief
The cartoonist-turned-politician founded the Shiv Sena to mobilise Marathi-speaking people on local issues. After dominating Maharashtra politics for over four decades,Bal Thackeray knows the pulse of his followers. Into his eighties,the popular orator can still bring Maharashtra to a halt if he wants to.
He demonstrated the clout of the Maharashtrian in cosmopolitan Mumbai. The Sena tied up with the BJP on the Hindutva plank and wrested power from the Congress in Maharashtra in 1995,but Bal Thackeray did not become chief minister or claim any office of power.
Apart from his ongoing alliance with the BJP,he maintains a close friendship with Sharad Pawar and his discreet understanding with the NCP has kept political pundits guessing.
95. Lalit Modi,45
The businessman from Mumbai,who suddenly chose Jaipur as his base with the intention of breaking into Indian cricket administration through the Rajasthan Cricket Association,organised the Indian Premier League and became an overnight role-model in the world of sports marketing.
When the IPL became a phenomenon last year,his stock rose to a point that he would easily have been the most powerful man in Indian sport. I am ruthless,without doubt, he said in an interview after the IPL.
In the latter half of the year,things started going wrong for hima new president and secretary taking over the BCCI,and worse,the electoral defeat of Vasundhara Raje,one of Modis staunchest backers. For now,though,hes
officially the man in charge.