Top 10 powerful women politicians of India
THE TOP 10
powerful women politicians of India have nothing to do with the Indian women populace. They may not have done anything for Indian women. There may not be any changes in the status of women in the Indian society. But still they find themselves in this power list. They have not only survived in this male bastion, they have also carved a niche for themselves. They have beaten men at their own game. Remember Maya–Mulayam, Jaya–Karunanidhi, etc etc. Some rose due to their mentors, some by virtue of being close to the powers that be and some are grassroots one especially Mamata Benerjee. These women have the staying power by striking poses and courting media. Of course, being Miss Moneybags too. They have left men far behind.
Mayawati Naina Kumari (53):
Undoubtedly, Behenji is numero uno. Born a dalit, she got educated to be a teacher. But destiny had other plans for her in the form of her political mentor Kanshi Ram and she joined Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) in 1984. Rest, as they say, is history. Her rise has been meteoric. She is the highest tax-paying Indian politician. The last heard of, she had paid 26 crore only in taxes. But then, she ends up making a neat packet of around Rs 75 crore. Let’s not talk about corruption here. She is present day’s Indira Gandhi. She rules with an iron hand. Never one to give in, she showed Mulayam Singh the stuffs she is made of. This woman of steel has been the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh four times. And the fifth time, she may as well be the Prime Minister of India. You have surely come a long way. What say others?
Sonia Gandhi (62): In her country of birth Italy, she may not be well known but in her adopted country India, every son/daughter of the soil knows her. All due to her being married into the most powerful political family of India. No patch on Indira, she is here by her sole matrimonial virtue. And her contribution to Indian politics is Ottavio Quattrocchi. Quattrocchi is the key to billions in Bofors kickbacks. But let’s not talk about corruption. India has been ruled by foreign powers most of the times - Mughals, British and now de facto Italians! She claims to have assets worth Rs 1.38 crore and she paid under six lakh rupees in taxes. She doesn’t even own a car or a house. But why should she? She owns the Indian National Congress.
Sheila Dixit (71): No doubt, she has scored a hat-trick by being the Chief Minister of Delhi for the third time. Extremely well-educated and wedded into an influential family, one wonders how she survives in dirty politics. But then ‘yes madaming’ Sonia Gandhi has its own benefits. Dixit has improved Delhi's roads but then she doesn’t have a clue about law and order in Delhi. Crime has risen especially against women. Doesn’t reflect much on this ‘woman’ CM. And let’s not talk about money and taxes here. Dixit may not know them.
Sushma Swaraj (57): One of the most prominent female politician, much was expected from her. Sadly, she became a petty rabble rouser. Otherwise, she has pretty clean record. Of course, she was the first woman CM of Delhi. She should be given the lifetime achievement award for threatening to shave her head, don a white saree and eat groundnuts (symbolically mourning) if Sonia Gandhi became the PM. How the ‘mighty’ fall?
Mamata Banerjee (54): She is the founder of Trinamool (grassroots) Congress Party. Simple, sober and clean, she should be the right choice to occupy the top slot. But then didi doesn’t believe in top but the roots. If she could cut down on her innumerable protests, she could lead the nation with her clean image. It matters big time.
Vasundhara Raje (56): Everything was handed to her on a platter by virtue of being born in a royal family. She didn’t have to struggle. Good. Otherwise, becoming the first woman Chief Minister of a feudal Rajasthan would have been an achievement worth lauding. Now as an ex-CM, wonder what the future has in store for her? National politics, eh!
Uma Ragini Bharti (50): She has also come a long way. She played a prominent role in Ayodhya movement. From being the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh to Hubli riot case, she has been everywhere. After breaking away from the BJP, she has been neither here nor there.
J Jayalalithaa (61): Her name spelling changes with the rise and fall of her political fortunes. Amma remains unmatched in corruption. Probably, Maya will give some decent competition to Jaya on this score. Never mind, corruption was never an issue. How could it be? It’s part and parcel of these great women’s lives. Despite formidable opposition, chiefly from Karunanidhi, this booty queen trampled it ruthlessly. She doesn’t brook any interference. She broke all records of money-making and lavish spending when she became the CM of Tamil Nadu for the first time. From jail to Assembly hall, her journey has been marked with many ups and downs. And Amma’s second name is vengeance. Beware.