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Top billionaire rank a big distraction for RIL chief

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Last Updated: March 14, 2008, 13:33 IST

Top billionaire rank a big distraction for RIL chief

Beware of such titillating illusion, warns Reliance Industries' Chairman.

New Delhi: Within days of being named richest resident Indian by the US magazine Forbes, Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani on Friday termed the hype over list of billionaires from the country as maya.

"There was much hype over the list of billionaires that India has thrown up... (but) this is a deceptive distraction," the head of the country's most valued corporate group said while referring to the Forbes' worldwide billionaire list that included 53 Indians.

"...It is like maya (illusion) of our Indian philosophy... It veils your vision and we should be beware of this titillating illusion," Ambani said while speaking at the India Today Conclave.

THE RICH LIST

In its list published on March 5, Forbes had ranked Mukesh as the richest resident Indian with a wealth of $43 billion. Among all the Indians residing across the world, Mukesh was ranked second after NRI steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal, whose wealth was put at $45 billion.

In the global list, Mukesh Ambani was ranked as fifth richest in the world after legendary investor Warren Buffett, Mexican telecom baron Carlos Slim Helu, software czar Bill Gates and ArcelorMittal CEO Lakshmi Mittal.

The magazine said that Mukesh Ambani was the second biggest gainer

Anil Ambani emerged as the biggest wealth creator in the list of world's richest people released on Thursday. Apart from the Ambanis, two other Indians — steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal, and realty baron KP Singh — have made it to top 10 positions, as against just one, Mittal, a year ago.
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India has retained its position as the top source of billionaires in Asia with total 53 people, who have a cumulative net worth of $340.9 billion on Forbes’ 2008 World's Billionaires list consisting of 1,125 people with a combined wealth of $4.4 trillion. A year ago, there were just 179 billionaires, Forbes said.

With a net worth of $62 billion, Buffett has topped the list, followed by Carlos Slim Helu ($60 billion) and Bill Gates ($58 billion) on second and third positions. These three are followed by three Indians — Lakshmi Mittal ($45 billion), Mukesh ($43 billion) and Anil ($42 billion) on fourth, fifth and sixth ranks.

Besides, DLF's K P Singh ($30 billion) has been ranked, after Sweden's Ingvar Kamprad ($31 billion). Other two in the top 10 are Russia's Oleg Deripaska ($28 billion) and Germany's Karl Albrecht ($27 billion).

Forbes said Anil Ambani is the biggest gainer with wealth soaring by $23.8 billion since the last list. He is only $1 billion behind his brother Mukesh, who is the second biggest gainer with a rise of $22.9 billion in his net worth.
first published:March 14, 2008, 13:33 IST
last updated:March 14, 2008, 13:33 IST