The most powerful Indians in 2013: No. 61-70

Indian Express: The most powerful Indians in 2013

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: April 23, 2013 6:02:53 pm

61

D Subbarao, 61

Governor,Reserve Bank of India

Rank ’12: 38

WHY

As the RBI Governor,he took crucial decisions on interest rate movement,announced measures to bring down inflation and regulated the banking sector. With his tough monetary stance,he was able to arrest the rise in prices,though it also impacted growth.

POWER PUNCH

He faced considerable pressure from many quarters—the government,industry and public—to bring down interest rates in 2012,but refused to give in as he felt high inflation was a tax on poor people.

WHAT NEXT

Inflation is finally on the decline but growth is also struggling. There can be further reduction in interest rates to kickstart the economy. New banking licences are also on the anvil. His concerns are high fiscal deficit and the widening current account deficit.

BY THE WAY

An MSc Physics from IIT Kanpur,Subbarao topped the Civil Services entrance examination in 1972.

62

Aamir Khan, 47

Actor

Rank ’12: 59

Why

His TV debut,Satyamev Jayate,which presented controversial issues in a novel way,was a major success. The show was telecast across the Star platform in several languages and on Doordarshan at the same time.

Power Punch

He nixed endorsements before Satyamev Jayate. He famously refused a deal worth Rs 150 crore because he only wanted to focus on social causes.

What Next

Yash Raj Films’ Dhoom 3 and Rajkumar Hirani’s P.K.

By The Way

In Dhoom 3,Aamir is playing the role of a circus acrobat on the lines of Cirque du Soleil.

63

Fali S Nariman, 84

Jurist and constitutional expert

Rank ’12: 43

Why

Ageing but still going strong,he has a redoubtable presence in the courtroom. Judges seek his opinion in important cases. The government often cites his criticism of the collegium system of appointments.

Power Punch

He led India’s legal team in the International Court of Arbitration last year. He persuaded the court to rule in favour of India’s position on the diversion of Kishanganga waters,and set aside objections by Pakistan,which had halted work on the 330 MW Kishanganga hydel project in Jammu & Kashmir. It is seen as a prominent diplomatic victory for India.

What Next

He has been spearheading a legal battle against continuance of MPs and MLAs as legislators even after their conviction in criminal cases. The Supreme Court is likely to pronounce its verdict soon.

By the way

He has not missed a single James Bond movie.

64

Anand Sharma, 60

Commerce and Industry minister

Rank ’12: 81

WHY

In his reformist avatar,he managed to implement the FDI policy in multi-brand retail despite stiff objection from then coalition partner TMC and the opposition.

POWER PUNCH

He is the face of the India-EU free-trade talks,which are expected to lead to the biggest foreign trade treaty India will sign.

WHAT NEXT

He is spearheading the setting up of National Investment and Manufacturing Zones. His ministry is working on concluding India-EU bilateral trade pact. He is also planning to revamp policy to revive SEZs.

BY THE WAY

He chaired the meeting on foreign policy at the Congress Chintan Shivir in Jaipur.

65

Ranjit Sinha, 60

Director,Central Bureau of Investigation

New on the list

Why

He inherits controversial cases like the VVIP chopper deal,the Tatra-BEML deal,

the Rs 14-crore bribe allegation by the former Army chief and 2G spectrum allocation. He gets a fixed term of two years which means he will demit office in December 2014,when there will be a new government at the Centre.

Power Punch

The opposition BJP asked for revoking of Sinha’s appointment,criticising the government’s method of choosing the CBI director. But he quietly survived the controversy.

What Next

If a new alliance comes to power at the Centre after the Lok Sabha polls,he will have to take tough decisions in politically sensitive cases.

By the Way

He is fond of Mukesh and Manna De songs and is a good swimmer.

66

Aruna Roy, 66

Social and political activist

Rank ’12: 49

Why

The IAS officer-turned-activist is not part of the system and yet works to bring change through it. She commands tremendous respect among most social movements for rights,access and struggle for dignity. Her involvement in Sonia Gandhi’s NAC,along with her ability to remain non-partisan,has kept her relevant.

Power Punch

She has moved beyond RTI and the MNREGA to making a case for protecting minimum wages and winning small but consistent battles in other arenas,like providing pension to the country’s growing elderly.

What Next

In the last year of the UPA government,she will ensure that more rights get promised and pushed on manifestos and get acceptability across political parties.

By The Way

Aruna’s cotton-sari wardrobe has as many colours as an artist’s palette. She loves Indian and western classical music.

67

Pawan Munjal, 58

MD & CEO,Hero MotoCorp Ltd

Rank ’12: 51

WHY

For a smooth ride after Honda’s exit from the joint venture Hero Honda,Pawan Munjal quickly steered Hero MotoCorp into several tie-ups with global design and technology companies,including Engines Engineering of Italy,to develop in-house technology. Munjal is also one of the highest-paid MDs and CEOs in the country. He took home Rs 34.47 crore as total remuneration in 2011-12.

POWER PUNCH

Honda’s exit was expected to hit his company,but he has established a strong brand identity in a short span of time and maintained its leadership position.

WHAT NEXT

All eyes are on what comes out of Hero’s stable after Honda pulls out its technology in 2014.

BY THE WAY

Munjal loves cars and has an Alfa Romeo in his collection.

68

K V Kamath, 65

Chairman,Infosys

Rank ’12: 56

WHY

As the non-executive chairman of Infosys and ICICI Bank,he heads two of the largest private sector companies in the country. He is an independent director of US-based oil services company Schlumberger Limited.

POWER PUNCH

After a few quarters of disappointing results,Infosys seems to be on the mend with better-than-expected third-quarter results and FY13 guidance. Under Kamath,it also made two high-profile acquisitions last year.

WHAT NEXT

His banking experience in the last 40 years is expected to come in handy for ICICI Bank as banks face the prospect of low credit offtake by Indian firms and the continuing economic slowdown.

BY THE WAY

His love for Formula One stretches back to before the sport was even talked about in India.

69

Rahul Bhatia, 51

Chairman,IndiGo

Rank ’12: 57

WHY

At a time when airlines have stopped adding capacity,IndiGo continues to buy aircraft. It recently got permission to import 12 aircraft.

POWER PUNCH

In July 2012,IndiGo became the largest airline in the country in terms of passenger carriage,surpassing Jet Airways,and has maintained the position since then.

WHAT NEXT

IndiGo has to work overtime to maintain its lead in market share without compromising on profitability at a time when competitors like SpiceJet are offering discounted fares to gain market share.

BY THE WAY

An avid golfer,he has been the chairman of the Delhi Golf Club.

70

Ghulam Nabi Azad, 64

Health Minister

Rank ‘12: 60

Why

He remains a key figure in the AICC. He is an important minister who also manages a variety of sensitive political issues such as Telangana.

Power Punch

The Rs 22,000 crore National Urban Health Mission can become Congress’s ticket to success in urban areas. He has ensured social-sector spending remains in focus.

What Next

Telangana will test Azad’s political acumen. As general secretary in charge of Andhra Pradesh,it is his task to improve the party fortunes in the state Assembly and Lok Sabha elections.

Oops moment

“Had he waited for a couple of years patiently,he would have become the chief minister by now,” he said about Jagan Mohan Reddy. YSR Congress asked if Jagan was being “targeted” only for leaving the Congress.

By the Way

He commissioned a tulip garden when he was J&K CM.

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