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Azim Premji become philanthropic Indian for the third consecutive year




Wipro chairman Azim Premji has been named the most philanthropic Indian for the third consecutive year, according to a report from Hurun Research Institute. which ranks the most generous individuals in the country.

Premji's contribution for education through the Azim Premji Foundation more than doubled to Rs 27,514 crore in 2015, from Rs. 12, 316 crore, a year earlier, the Hurun Philanthropy List 2015 said. With contribution of Rs 2,404 crore, Nandan and Rohini Nilekani climbed up the list at the second position, from sixth in 2014 while former Infosys chairman Narayana Murthy came in third with contribution of Rs 1,322 crore.

The Wipro billionaire, who has given away about $8.5 billion in charitable causes, recently urged rich Indians to be more forthcoming in giving away their wealth in a poverty-ridden country. His Foundation works to improve the quality of education across many government schools in India in eight states which together have over 3.5 lakh schools.

The contributions from the top 10 philanthropists nearly doubled to Rs 34,077 crore during the year, from Rs 18,096 crore in the previous year. Premji's contribution made up about 81% of the total wealth given away. The Hurun list, however, shrunk to 36 Indians from 50 in 2014, based on a minimum contribution of Rs 10 crores and above.

Other prominent people include Shiv Nadar of HCL, Mukesh Ambani of Reliance, former UTV chief executive Ronnie Screwvala, Rahul Bajaj and Pallonji Mistry, Infosys co-founder K. Dinesh and education entrepreneur Sunny Varkey are the new entrants.

In terms of avenues of contribution, education remained most favoured among philanthropists at 50%, followed by social development (25%) and healthcare (17%).

Mumbai topped the list with 10 philanthropists from the financial capital followed by 9 from Bengaluru. Led by Premji, south Indians donated more than north Indians, according to the report. Tata group emeritus chairman Ratan Tata, Vedanta chairman Anil Agarwal and former Infosys CEO Kris Gopalakrishnan, who were in the 2014 list, did not make the cut in 2015.