Power Speaker: Smriti Irani
The small-screen actor’s big-ticket moment was when she was handpicked by the BJP as a candidate who could put up a credible fight in the Gandhi family bastion of Amethi in Uttar Pradesh. And Smriti Irani wastes no time in attacking the opposition either on social media or in front of a live audience. The former Mc Donald’s burger flipper, Miss India finalist and superstar of Indian television is now an MP, a spokesperson and vice-president of BJP and the president of the party’s Women Wing. Despite losing her debut against Kapil Sibal in 2004, television’s ‘Tulsi’ brushed aside the setback and worked hard to earn a place among the front-ranking woman leaders in the BJP. A key member of Narendra Modi’s inner circle, she speaks her mind and is quite articulate about her political dreams. Her NGO deals with providing water solutions to villages. She has actively worked and fought for women’s rights.
On patriotism: ‘I love my country enough to vote, pay my taxes and to put it before family and self.’
On criticism: ‘I do my work…I don’t allow any of this to distract me.’
Support system: ‘Irrespective of what job profile you hold, it all boils down to the support you get from your near and dear ones. And that’s why I am where I am today.’
On governance: ‘I think leadership qualities are not decided on proclamations. A government is judged by what it delivers and not what it promises.’