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Notable Personalities In Gujarat

Sanjeev Kumar, Bollywood film star

Sanjeev Kumar the veteran Bollywood actor was born on 9 July 1938. He was one of the finest actors of his time. He had won numerous awards for his excellent acting skills including two National Film Awards for Best Actor for his outstanding performances in the movies, Dastak and Koshish.  His versatility in acting made him work in various films ranging from comedy, romantic and action thrillers.  He was never reluctant in experimenting with different roles. This was the reason why he did not stick to the one chocolate romantic hero image. He never hesitated in playing roles beyond his age. His roles in movies like Trishul and Sholay are classic examples and these roles have been widely appreciated. His natural acting skill and the flexibility to handle different characters simultaneously had made him one of the finest actors of all times in Bollywood. He remained single throughout his life and finally succumbed to a fatal heart attack on 6 Nov 1985. He is survived by two younger brothers and a sister. Sanjeev Kumar has the distinction of being nominated for 14 Film fare Awards. Out of the 14 nominations three times he was nominated for best supporting actor and the remaining 11 times he was nominated for best actor. He won the coveted award twice for best actor category and once for best supporting actor.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born on 2nd October 1869 in Porbandar Gujarat to the couples Karamchand Gandhi and Putli Bai. He completed his studies in law at University College, London. In the year 1891 Gandhi returned back to India to continue his law practice at Bombay but could not find any success. However, after struggling for 2 years an Indian firm which had its business in South Africa appointed him as the legal advisor to work in the company’s Durban office. On his arrival at Durban Gandhi experienced bitter racial discrimination and inferior treatment. He planned to fight these disparities in the society and developed his methods of non-violence and truth which he called as Satyagraha. Gandhi then returned to India in the year 1915 and became the leader of the Indian Nationalist Movement which was fighting for India’s Independence. He used his principles of Satyagraha and led the Indian freedom struggle and ultimately won Independence for the country on 15th Aug 1947. He was eventually assassinated on 30th Jan 1948. He was 78 when he died.

Vikram Sarabhai

Vikram Ambalal Sarabhai was born on 12 Aug 1919. He was a renowned physician who pioneered in setting up the Indian Space program. He is regarded as the "Father of Indian space program" for his commendable contribution in the field. Vikram Sarabhai married Mrinalini Sarabhai who was a renowned classical dancer in the year 1942. The relatives of Vikram Sarabhai could not attend his marriage ceremony as the country was going through the Quit India movement led by Gandhiji. Vikram Sarabhai did not have a blissful married life. He was blessed with two children Kartikeya and Mallika. He was involved in a long term relationship with Dr.Kamala Choudhary while going through the troubled marriage phase. Both his son and daughter have been felicitated with the Padma Awards. His daughter has won the Padma Bhushan in 2010, and son has won the Padma Shri in 2012. Vikram Sarabhai died on 30 December 1971 at Thiruvananthapuram Kerala. He was on his way to attend the foundation stone laying ceremony of Thumba Railway station which was constructed to provide railway link to the Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station.

Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India

Narendra Damodardas Modi who is popularly called Narendra Modi was born on 17 September 1950. He is the present chief minister of Gujarat who is currently in his fourth term. The election campaign work performed by Narendra Modi during the elections in 1995 and 1998 helped the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to emerge victorious. His position was elevated and he became the chief minister for the first time when his predecessor, Keshubhai Patel resigned from the post following the parties defeat in 2001 by elections. He is currently the longest serving chief minister of Gujarat. The Bharatiya Janata Party under his leadership made a landslide victory in 2012 State Assembly Elections. Modi is an active member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). He is a qualified politician with a master's degree in political science and he holds a vision for the development of the state. He is surrounded by the controversies of Gujarat riots in 2002 and it resulted in a lot of criticism of his administration. However, he is also regarded as the person responsible for the enormous economic development of the state and some of his ambitious projects have won laurels from the entire front.

Dhirubhai Ambani

Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani who is popularly known as 'Dhirubhai Ambani' was born on 28 Dec 1932. He is India’s successful industrialist and founder of Reliance Industries. Dhirubhai Ambani has the unique distinction of featuring in the Sunday Times list of top 50 businessmen in Asia. Ambani helped the reliance Industries scale numerous achievements and by the year end of 2007 the combined wealth of the family was estimated at a whopping $60 billion, making his family the second richest in the world. He had massive heart attack in Feb 1986, which left his right hand paralyzed and he was in coma for more than a week.

Dhirubhai Ambani suffered the second major heart attack and was hospitalized in Breach Candy Hospital where he breathed his last on 6 Jul 2002.

Mukesh Ambani

Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani the eldest son of Dhirubhai Ambani was born on 19 April 1957. He is the present chairman and CEO of the giant business house Reliance Industries Limited (RIL). RIL is regarded as the most valuable company by the market value. He is the highest share holder of the company with a total of 44.7 percent stake in the company. The head office of RIL is located in Mumbai, India. The company’s business includes petrochemicals, mining, refineries, oil and gas. Reliance Retail Ltd is a subsidiary unit of RIL which was launched in the year 2006 with its headquarters in Mumbai.  The Reliance retail Ltd is regarded as the largest retailer in the country. Mukesh Ambani is also the co-owner of the IPL team Mumbai Indians along with wife Nita Ambani.

Anil Ambani

Anil Dhirubhai Ambani the younger son of Dhirubhai Ambani was born on 4 June 1959. He is the chairman of Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group which is one of the largest chains of private conglomerates in India. His elder brother Mukesh is the chairman of Reliance Industries. The Ambani’s are the richest family in the country and also one of the richest in the world. The enormous wealth is inherited from their father Dhirubhai Ambani who was the founder of Reliance Group. Anil Ambani is the member of the following Boards:

  • Board of Overseers at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania
  • Board of Governors of the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur
  • Board of Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.
  • Central Advisory Committee, Central Electricity Regulatory Commission. (resigned in 2006)
  • Chairman of Board of Governors of DA-IICT, Gandhi nagar.

Irfan Pathan

Irfan Khan Pathan made his debut in the International cricket in the late 2003 and was the member of the Indian national team till 2006. His all round performance has won him numerous laurels. However, with the decline in form he was forced to go out of the team. He has only had a brief stint in the test team and has been in and out of the limited over team during the past few years. He holds the distinction of being the highest wicket taker in the Twenty20 Internationals and is the 8th highest wicket taker in ODIs for India.

Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata

Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata is considered as the most successful Indian Industrialists of the Independent India. He was the founder of the Tata Group which is one of the pioneer companies which set up the economic growth of the country. He was born in a Parsi Zoroastrian family of Navsari which belonged to the princely state of Baroda. He is regarded as the “Father of Indian Industry".

Ness Wadia

Ness Wadia belongs to the prestigious Wadia family. He is presently the Managing Director of the Bombay Burmah Trading Corporation. It is a popular company which has holdings in numerous Wadia Group subsidiaries, which includes indirect majority stake in Britannia Industries. He had also been the Joint Managing Director of Bombay Dyeing, which is one of the earliest business house and popular brand in the country. He remained the Joint Director till March 2011. He was also involved with Go air a low fare domestic airlines.  He is the co-owner of the Kings XI Punjab an Indian Premier League team along with ex-girlfriend and actress Preity Zinta.

Sunita Williams

Sunita Williams was born on 19 Sep 1965. She is an American astronaut and a US Navy officer. She has a paternal links with India and her mother is a Slovenian. She holds multiple records in the field of astronomy. Her records include:

  • Longest single space flight by a woman: 192 days
  • Total spacewalks by a woman: 07
  • The most spacewalk time for a woman: 50 hours and 40 minutes

Some of the prestigious assignments handled by Williams include member of 14th and 15th Expedition, flight engineer of 32nd expedition and finally commander of 33rd Expedition.

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