Sonia, Tata, Nooyi in Time’s most influential people list


New York : Two Indians, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and industrialist Ratan Tata, as well as PepsiCo’s Indian American chief executive Indra Nooyi have been listed by the Time newsmagazine among the world’s 100 most influential people of 2008.

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Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, living in exile in India, is also in the list released Wednesday.

Gandhi and the Dalai Lama are listed in the Leaders and Revolutionaries category while Nooyi and Tata figure in the list of Builders and Titans.

Gandhi’s profile, penned by Shashi Tharoor, highlights her turning down the opportunity to become prime minister four years ago. “She prefers to remain behind the throne, walking with the peasantry, rallying the people,” it says.

The magazine lauds Nooyi thus: “Her sharp strategic mind, tremendous market insight and humanitarian contributions all combine to make her a rare executive among the global corporate giants.”

Tata is hailed for his Rs.100,000 Nano aimed at putting a car within affordable reach of millions more Indians.

The Dalai Lama, profiled by Deepak Chopra, comes in for praise for remaining “calm in the face of cruelty” against his people by the Chinese.

The world’s most influential person in 2008, according to 1.8 million voters, is Shigeru Miyamoto, who designed Nintendo video game (Wii console being a runaway success). He topped the poll with the highest influence rating.

Miley Cyrus, singer actress of Hanna Montana fame, at 15 is the youngest on the Time list, in its second year.