Supposed Shadow Sovereigns

This is the second Power Women list in the March 12 edition of Business India (first power women list). It is titled Shadow Sovereigns – inaccurately so, IMO. I will explain why in a bit.

Who are these shadow sovereigns? These are the force behind the male CEO’s – the wives, mothers, etc. And they are:

  1. Kokilaben Ambani (wife of Dhirubhai Ambani, Reliance Group)
  2. Nita Ambani (w/o Mukesh Ambani, Reliance Group)
  3. Tina Ambani (w/o of Anil Ambani, Reliance Group)
  4. Rajashree Birla (from the Birla clan)
  5. Parmeshwar Godrej (w/o Adi Godrej, Godrej Group)
  6. Geetanjali Kirloskar (w/o Vikram Kirloskar, Kirloskar Group)
  7. Sudha Murthy (w/o Narayana Murth, Infosys)
  8. Rohini Nilakeni (w/o Nandan Nilekani, Infosys)
  9. Simone Tata (from the Tata clan)
  10. Maureen Wadia (w/o Nusli Wadia, Bombay Dyeing)

The problem with this list above is that it seems to make these women nothing but appendages to their powerful husbands while in reality these are power women on their own right (and might). Geetanjali Kirloskar for instance is the director of a high-profile ad agency, Quadrant. Sudha Murthy is one of the founding geeks at Infosys and is also a well-known Kannada author with 20 books to her credit. Simone Tata created the illustrious cosmetic brand – Lakmé India.

To its credit, the article does acknowledge much of this. However, at the end of the day, by calling them “shadow sovereigns” and by treating them as satellites of their respective spouses, it seems to minimize their individual achievements.

Now having said all that, I knew 6 of the ten above thanks the recent shenanigans at the Reliance. How many do you know?

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.