Modi, Kejriwal among Time’s 100 most influential people

Washington: Indian Prime Minster Narendra Modi and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal have been voted among the 100 most influential people in the world in a poll conducted by the prestigious Time magazine.

Modi, who became prime minister following a landslide electoral victory last year, polled 0.6 percent of the votes in this year’s Time 100 readers’ poll.

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Kejriwal, who staged a political comeback, winning the Delhi elections earlier this year with an overwhelming mandate, got 0.5 percent of the votes cast by the readers of the magazine.

“The populist Modi, who was swept to power last year on a pledge to boost India’s economic punch, has rolled out key economic reforms and restored close ties with the US, hosting President Barack Obama in January after a rock-star visit to the US in September,” the Time magazine said.

On Kejriwal, the magazine noted that after a brief stint as chief minister of Delhi in 2013, he was re-elected in February this year, and led his “anti-establishment Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in a rout of both the leading national parties in Delhi assembly elections”.

Russian President Vladimir Putin was voted as the most influential person in the world, according to the poll, with 6.95 percent of the votes in the final tally.

Rapper-singer CL (of the South Korean girl-group 2NE1) claimed the number two spot with 6.9 percent of the votes. Pop stars Lady Gaga, Rihanna and Taylor Swift rounded off the top five with 2.6 percent, 1.9 percent and 1.8 percent of the votes, respectively.

The Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Tibetans, with 1.7 percent of the votes, and Pakistani Nobel laureate peace activist Malala Yousafzai, with 1.6 percent of the votes, found places in the top 10. Pope Francis, with 1.5 percent of the votes, was the only other non-entertainer in the top 10.

US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama sat just outside the top 10 and occupied successive slots, with 1.4 percent and 1.2 percent of the votes cast, respectively.

The Time 100 is an annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world, spanning politics, entertainment, business, technology, science, religion and other fields. Chosen by the editors of the magazine, voting for the readers’ poll closed on April 10.

More than half of the votes, or 57.38 percent, were cast within the US. Canada and Britain followed with 5.54 percent and 4.55 percent, respectively.