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Top Indian philanthropists are all women: Forbes

Last updated on: March 5, 2010 19:21 IST

Top Indian philanthropists are all women: Forbes

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It's truly women on top as all four Indian corporate leaders featuring in Forbes' list of Asia Pacific's most generous business personalities this year are women, including biotech major Biocon's CEO Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw and Anu Aga of Thermax.

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Image: Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw.
Photographs: Reuters
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Anu Aga

Anu Aga was chairperson of Thermax from 1996-2004. After retirement, she took up social work. She supports various organizations that promote education of underprivileged children. She has started centres for slum children in Pune. Thermax donates 1 per cent of its profits to charity.

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Image: Anu Aga.

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Kiran Nadar

The two others making it to the business magazine's '48 Heroes of Philanthropy' list are Kiran Nadar, collector of contemporary Indian arts and wife of HCL Technologies co-founder Shiv Nadar. Kiran has been involved in transformational education through the SSN Institutions and now VidyaGyan and the proposed Shiv Nadar University.

She is also involved in an initiative of the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation which sponsors the education of muslim girl children in key backward districts of Uttar Pradesh.

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Image: Kiran Nadar.

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Top Indian philanthropists are all women: Forbes

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Rohini Nilekani

Rohini Nilekani, wife of IT major Infosys' co-founder Nandan Nilekani supports many NGO activities, has featured in the list for the second consecutive year.

"Rohini has donated $40 million over the years to supporting causes such as education, microfinance, health care and environment," Forbes said. The leaders were selected on the basis of their contribution to causes like disaster relief, education, health, culture and sciences.

Rohini Nilekani has been associated with  Akshara Foundation since its inception in 2000. She is also the Chairperson and founder of Arghyam, which promotes equity and sustainability in access to water.

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Image: Rohini Nilekani (inset).

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Top Indian philanthropists are all women: Forbes

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Last year, the list included telecom czar Sunil Mittal, NRI businessman Anil Agarwal and HCL Technologies Chairman Shiv Nadar. The list features 48 individuals, four each from India, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Australia and Japan.

These aren't always the biggest givers. Instead we aim to highlight a varied group of generous people, some hold-overs from last year but mostly new names who deserve recognition. By calling attention to these 48 we hope to encourage more giving," Forbes' Asia Associate Editor John Koppisch said.

Forbes said one of the high-profile givers this year are Andrew Forrest of Australia. Besides, Hollywood actor Jackie Chan has donated $730,000 to the United Nations and the families of eight Chinese peace-makers, who died in Haiti earthquake.

Among others on the list are Rupert Murdoch's mother Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, Chen Shu-Chu, a vegetable vendor from Taiwan, Peter Gautschi of HongKong, Ruby Khong of Malaysia, and Japan's Soichiro Fukutake.

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Image: Sunil Mittal, chairman, Bharti group.
Photographs: Paresh Gandhi.
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