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Special to the tribune
Russian tycoon topples steel baron Mittal to become UK’s richest
Shyam Bhatia in London

London-based NRI billionaire Lakshmi Mittal has been displaced as the richest man in the United Kingdom by Uzbekistan-born Russian tycoon Alisher Usmanov, whose estimated £13.3 billion wealth has been earned from mobile telephone and mining.

Although Mittal’s steel-based fortune has declined £2.7 billion to £10 billion, he still ranks as the fourth richest individual in the UK in the annual Rich List compiled by the Sunday Times newspaper. Described him as the Steel Maharaja who topped the Rich List for eight years running, the 40 per cent stake that that he and his wife hold in steel-making giant ArcelorMittal has plunged by more than £20billion from its peak value in 2008.

Mittal and other NRIs, however, are still prominently represented in the Rich List. They include the Hinduja brothers -- Sri and Gopi -- whose assets include the IndusInd Bank and who are estimated to be worth £10.6 billion. They are ranked third on the Rich List.

Ranked 24 is London-based Ravi Ruia, who together with brother Shashi runs the Essar group that includes marine construction, oil and steel operations. The brothers’ assets are currently valued at £5.1 billion.

Further down the list at 35 is Vedanta Resources’ Anil Agarwal, who owns the metals-to-oil group currently producing 175,00 barrels of oil a day in Rajasthan. Agarwal, who owns a £20 million home in central London, is estimated to be worth £2.2 billion.

Only slightly less well off is Jalandhar-born Lord Paul, who was suspended for four months from the House of Lords in 2010, for his “utterly unreasonable” expenses claims running into thousands of pounds. Paul’s wealth is estimated at £2 billion.

Sri Prakash Lohia, ranked 39, is thought to be worth some ££1.89 billion. He is married to Mittal’s sister, Seema, and his fortune is based on plastics and textile companies. Ajay Kalsi, ranked 57 and worth an estimated £1.4 billion, owns Indus Gas that operates in Western India, with additional interests in footwear, commodity trading and business outsourcing.

Pjilip Beresford, who compiled the Rich List, is quoted in the Sunday Times as saying: “All I want is to provide every year an accurate representation of how wealth stands in the country. I let the rest of the world argue about it. In a democracy, I believe it is right and proper for such a list to be produced because the rich and powerful do have an enormous influence.

Hindujas at No. 3

  • Uzbek-born Russian tycoon Alisher Usmanov, with interests in mobile telephony and mining, is now the richest man in United Kingdom estimated worth: £13.3 billion
  • Mittal and other NRIs are still prominently represented on the Rich List, led by the Hinduja brothers at No. 3 estimated worth: £10.6 billion
  • At No. 24 is London-based Ravi Ruia, who with brother Shashi runs the Essar group estimated worth: £5.1 billion
  • Further down the list at 35 is Vedanta Resources’ Anil Agarwal, who own the metals-to-oil group that is currently producing 1.75 lakh barrels oil a day in Rajasthan estimated worth: £2.2 billion
  • Only slightly less well off is Jalandhar-born Lord Paul estimated worth: £2 billion





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