The most powerful Indians in 2013: No. 71-80

Indian Express: The most powerful Indians in 2013

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: April 23, 2013 5:32 pm

71

Lakshmi Niwas Mittal, 62

Chairman,Arcelor Mittal

Rank ’12: 63

WHY

He heads the world’s biggest steel company and plans to set up two plants worth Rs 40,000 crore in India. However,this huge investment has not yet matured.

POWER PUNCH

Battling recession in the global steel industry,he intends to proceed with job cuts in his French unit,undeterred by warnings from the French and other European governments. His company has inked a supply pact with the US subsidiary of Essar Steel.

WHAT NEXT

He now wants to focus on consolidating his company’s mining business,which has turned out to be more profitable than steel making,in which the company suffered a loss of nearly $3 billion in 2012.

BY THE WAY

His residence at Kensington Palace Gardens has marble from the same quarry that supplied for the Taj Mahal.

72

Aditya Puri, 59

MD & CEO,HDFC Bank

Rank ’12: 77

WHY

As the MD since 1994,he has been able to maintain stability at the top which,many say,is the reason behind the bank’s success. Despite a growth of 30 per cent,Puri has not compromised on margins and asset quality unlike some other banks.

POWER PUNCH

HDFC became the most-valued bank in India with a market capitalisation of Rs 160,000 crore in 2012,pushing SBI to the second place.

WHAT NEXT

He wants to bring 10 million families into the banking fold and provide world-class,technology-enabled services to customers. Now the bank is reaching out to rural customers.

BY THE WAY

His daughter,Amrita Puri,a rising new talent,played the female lead in Kai Po Che!

73

N Srinivasan, 68

President,Board of Control for Cricket in India

Rank ’12: 66

WHY

He remains the most influential man in world cricket because he presides over the BCCI’s $1 billion cricket empire. He is so powerful that he can force the ICC to toe his line.

POWER PUNCH

As the BCCI president,he has managed to unite a fractious group. He has made the organisation stronger,both financially and administratively. Even remote cricket centres such as Ranchi now have world-class stadiums.

WHAT NEXT

His term ends next year,and he is in the reckoning for the ICC head.

BY THE WAYM

Golf player Jack Nicklaus is his favourite. He is also a voracious reader of fiction and history.

74

Samir Jain, 57

Vice Chairman,Bennett,Coleman & Co Ltd

Vineet Jain, 45

Managing Director,BCCL

Rank ’12: 67

Why

They have created the country’s most successful and profitable media empire which includes the world’s largest selling English newspaper,The Times of India.

Power Punch

TOI launched eight new editions and a Bengali newspaper.

What Next

BCCL is looking at adding new TV channels to its bouquet.

By The Way

Samir reads a lot of English literature and holidays in England. Vineet is a supporter of gay rights. He wrote in a blog if being gay was an inborn attribute,the law could do little about it.

75

Sanjay Gupta, 44

CEO,Jagran Prakashan & Editor,Dainik Jagran

M M Gupta, 71

Chairman & MD,Jagran Prakashan

Rank ’12: 69

Why

Dainik Jagran continues to lead in readership despite intense competition. Rivals such as Dainik Bhaskar that are entering new markets at a furious pace have not been able to beat Jagran,let alone displace it.

Power Punch

Jagran Prakashan stunned its rivals last year by quietly acquiring one of the most reputable Hindi dailies,Nai Dunia. The deal,struck for Rs 150 crore,not only gave it more than 5,00,000 new readers but also gave Jagran a foothold in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh,considered to be a bastion of rival Dainik Bhaskar.

What Next

Consolidating the recently acquired brands and building on their strengths.

By The Way

Sanjay is passionate about music and films. M M Gupta loves spending time with his grandchildren.

76

C Rangarajan, 80

Chairman,PM’s Economic Advisory Council

Rank ‘12: 70

WHY

He is Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s sounding board on economy. Besides setting the policy on many other issues,he has also set the policy on sugar de-control and pricing of natural gas.

POWER PUNCH

The co-relation between his views on interest rates and the subsequent RBI decisions has been so high that news wires have often carried his comments as ‘the decision’,and markets have reacted accordingly.

WHAT NEXT

He will remain one sane voice against the entitlement-led,vote-catching programmes the UPA government is determined to pursue. For example,his comments on the Food Security Bill are one of the reasons it has got held up.

BY THE WAY

He is an atheist,but his wife rarely lets any religious occasion slip by without the mandatory puja.

77

Shobhana Bhartia, 54

Chairperson and Editorial Director,Hindustan Times Group

Rank ’12: 71

Why

The Hindustan Times Group is one of the largest media houses with interests across print,radio and digital media. Flagship Hindustan Times continues to lead in the most coveted and competitive market of Delhi.

Power Punch

Bhartia has been the leading force behind the group’s profitable growth in the past few years which saw a global economic slowdown. In the quarter-ended December,HT Media posted an 11% growth in net profit at Rs 53.6 crore. In 2012,the Great Place to Work Institute ranked it as one the best Indian media companies to work for and the 16th best across industries.

What Next

Establishing the Hindi daily Hindustan in newer markets and becoming stronger in Mumbai.

By The Way

She won’t make anybody wait nor does she take it kindly if she is made to wait.

78

Uday Shankar, 50

Chief executive,Star India

Rank ’12: 72

Why

After a brief period of strife,Rupert Murdoch’s Star India is once again the country’s largest and most profitable broadcaster. The credit for this turnaround goes to Shankar. He also played a crucial role in various industry-specific initiatives.

Power Punch

He convinced Murdoch to move out of the ESPN JV,go solo with Star Sports and bid for BCCI rights. Star India won the BCCI rights for six years. A laggard in the sports genre,it is a leading sports channel now. He convinced film actor Aamir Khan to work on small screen. Aamir’s talk show Satyamev Jayate was a major success.

What Next

He intends to “make playing and viewing of sports an integral part of India’s lifestyle”.

By The Way

He brings bagfuls of carrots for his dog on trips back from London.

79

Arvind Kejriwal, 44

Leader,Aam Aadmi Party

Rank ’12: 27

Why

The acrimonious public split with Anna Hazare notwithstanding,Kejriwal continues to attract crowds and his Aam Aadmi Party retains a big faction of India Against Corruption.

Power Punch

He has championed causes ranging from hike in water and power tariff to a fare revision for auto rickshaws. He has called for non-payment of water and power bills,an anarchist cry bound to generate debate.

What Next

He has started working on creating a mass base in jhuggies.

By The Way

A film buff,he rarely missed a new release,Bollywood or Hollywood,before 2010.

80

Sunil Bharti Mittal, 55

Executive Chairman,Bharti Airtel

Rank ’12: 29

WHY

His company showed the way to the high-cost-hit telecom industry by increasing mobile tariff in January. The free minutes in the offers were reduced to boost bottom line.

POWER PUNCH

In October,Airtel inaugurated a unique Network Experience Centre to monitor its network performance across all segments from a single location,which can also be used by the government during emergency.

WHAT NEXT

Mittal needs to find ways to check falling profits of the company and boost its Africa operations,besides fighting the 2G battle in court.

BY THE WAY

He plays the tanpura to relax.

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