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Top 10 Women Entrepreneurs And Leaders Of India

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By Bhavita Kukreja:

Women Entrepreneurs may be defined as the women or group of women who initiate,organise and co-operate a business enterprise. Government of India has defined women entrepreneurs as an enterprise owned and controlled by a woman having a minimum financial interest of 51% of the capital and giving atleast 51% of employment generated in the enterprise to women.

The Indian women are no longer treated as show pieces to be kept at home.They are also enjoying the impact of globalisation and making an influence not only on domestic but also on international sphere.Women are doing a wonderful job striking a balance between their house and career. Here are a few: (The lists consists of no political figure and concentrates only on business leaders and organizational heads).

Dr. Kiran Mazumdar Shaw

1.Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairman & Managing Director of Biocon Ltd., who became India’s richest woman in 2004, was educated at the Bishop Cotton Girls School and Mount Carmel College in Bangalore. She founded Biocon India with a capital of Rs.10,000 in her garage in 1978 – the initial operation was to extract an enzyme from papaya. Her application for loans were turned down by banks then – on three counts – biotechnology was then a new word, thecompany lacked assets, women entrepreneurs were still a rarity. Today, her company is the bigget biopharmaceutical firm in the country.

Ekta Kapoor

2.Ekta Kapoor, creative head of Balaji Telefilms, is the daughter of Jeetendra and sister of Tushar Kapoor. She has been synonymous with the rage of soap operas in Indian TV, after her most famous venture ‘Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi’ which was aired in 2000 on Star plus. Ekta dominates Indian Television.At the 6th Indian Telly Awards 2006,she bagged the Hall Of Fame award for her contributions.

Neelam Dhawan

3. Neelam Dhawan, Managing Director, Microsoft India, leads Microsoft India. She is a graduate from St. Stephens College in 1980,and also passed out from Delhis Faculty Of Management studies in 1982. Then she was keen on joining FMCG majors like Hindustan Lever and Asian Paints, both companies rejected Dhawan, as they didnot wish to appoint women for marketing and sales.

Naina Lal Kidwai

4. Naina Lal Kidwai, was the first Indian woman to graduate from Harvard Business School. Fortune magazine listed Kidwai among the worlds top 50 Corporate Women from 2000 to 2003. According to the Economic times, she is the first woman to head the operations of a foreign bank in India. ( HSBC)

Indu Jain

5. Indu Jain, the multi-faceted lady used to be the Chairman of the Times Group-The most powerful and largest Media house India has known. Indu Jain is known by many different identities such as that of spiritualist,humanist,entrepreneur,an educationalist but most prominently she played the role of the Chairman of Times Group. Indu Jain is the perfect picture of the successful Indian Woman entrepreneur.

Priya Paul

6.Priya Paul, she has a bachelor’s degree specialising in Economics from Wellesley College, USA. She entered her family business and is currently the Chairperson of Park Hotels.

Simone Tata

7. Simone Tata, has been instrumental in changing a small subsidary of Tata Oil Mills into the largest cosmetic brand in India – LAKME, synonymous today with Indian Fashion. She became a part of Lakme during 1961 and has been responsible for turning the company into one of the biggest brands of fashion in India. At present she is the Chairperson of Trent Limited, a subsidary of Tata Group.

Mallika Srinivasan

8.Mallika Srinivasan, currently the Director of TAFE- Tractors and Farm Equipment, India , was honoured with the title of Businesswoman of the Year during 2006 by the Economic Times. She joined the company in 1986 and has since been responsible for accelerating turnover from 85 crores to 2900 crores within a span of 2 decades.

Preetha Reddy

9. Preetha Reddy, Managing Director of Apollo Hospitals, Chennai, one of the largest healthcare conglomerates of India, is one of the pioneer businesswoman of India in the segment of Health Care Industry.

Ranjana Kumar

10. Ranjana Kumar, currently Vigilance Commissioner in Central Vigilance Commission, after her retirement as the Chairperson of NABARD- National Bank For Agricultural and Rural Development, is a prominent Indian Banker. When the Government of India appointed her as the Chairperson and Managing Director of The Indian Bank, she became the first woman to become head of a public sector bank in India. At that time of her appointment, The Indian Bank was saddled with huge losses and during her tenure she ensured the turn around of The Indian Bank.

Women like these are an inspiration for all other women who strive to achieve great heights in their lives. Taking them as our role models each one of us can be there where they are right now. All we need have is faith in ourselves, confidence and above all a fixed aim that we need work towards.

You must be to comment.
  1. Mohammad Omar via Facebook

    Another addition can be Brinda Somaya.

  2. chandrakala

    i want to be a good enterpreneur in the world……….. my best wishers to all top enterpreneurs…………

    1. papillon1406

      Do you have a dream? Only people who have dreams and are passionate about their dreams will be successfull in life.
      I have dreams and I have found the key to achieve my dreams.

    2. vijayalakshmi

      i really wonder to the world bcz…………very powerfull to role playing in women enterpreneurs…………..All is well to do something in higher acheivment………………

    3. vijayalakshmi

      i really lucky for taking in Business life…………….!

  3. kavitha s n

    hai….i am doing electrical engineering. now, am in final year. my aim is to become a good entrepreneur. its nice to see the top women entrepreneurs

  4. suni

    my dream is to be worlds youngest and toppest business women.
    ” world is big and beautifull if u want to move ahead be like a air, where ur presence can be felt in all t place ” be a symbol of victory and i am one of it.

  5. Hemavathi.g.p

    i got inspired by looking the women entrepreneurs and i want to become a women entrepreneurs. and i want to be a job providers

  6. savithri

    I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE MY LIFE MEANINGFUL THROUGH BECOMING AN ENTREPRENEUR; HEARTY WISHES TO OUR WOMEN.

    1. Vyolet

      In the comlpciated world we live in, it’s good to find simple solutions.

  7. geetha

    i am an entrepreneur (women) with high hopes of going global.give me some ideas to go global like our top women entrepreneurs. 🙂

  8. sabreena begg

    hello……i m doing my engineering now…….and even i have dreams of becoming a global and successful enterpreneur…….and i will definitely make my dreams come true……..thanks for writing about these inspirational women……they really inspires us…….

    1. virender singh

      you are doing eng… and want to become entre.. that’s not a bad idea. go for it

  9. stalin

    i am doing my mba in st joseph’s institute of management in trichy
    i am very proud of my indian’s women
    surly i can say women becomes good position in society today
    i really congratulation for sucessful women

  10. Dania

    Truly inspiring…women in our society can really make a difference if they work hard to achieve their dream. Perseverance, i believe is the key to sucess, to win in this male dominated society. I hope we have more women entrepreneurs and leaders in the near future.

  11. Dania Hanif

    Truly inspiring…women in our society can really make a difference if they work hard to achieve their dream. Perseverance, i believe is the key to sucess, to win in this male dominated society. I hope we have more women entrepreneurs and leaders in the near future.

  12. sowmya

    really its pleasure 2 c women entrepreneurs
    they stood as motivators 4 us

  13. Geetha

    I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE MY LIFE MEANINGFUL THROUGH BECOMING AN ENTREPRENEUR; HEARTY WISHES TO OUR WOMEN.

  14. siva

    I came to know these womens after knowing their products and achievements.

    Now, I agree that

    Behind every success there is a women (entrepreneurs).

    All the best ladies:-)

  15. SHRUTI KHANNA

    hey….nyc 2 c budding entrepreneurs…..whoever wants 2 b an entrepreneur or wanna knw hw 2 expand/improve your business…. thr is an entrepreneurship programme in banglore and pune….you will walk out wid d knowledge which wud help u in every aspect of ur business…
    for passes contact me at shrutikhanna.khanna@gmail.com….

  16. arpita

    proud to b an woman….

  17. madhuri malawant

    i m very much influenced by our top women entreprenuers because they had proved that a lady is not merely for care taking of family but they can also handle the official works with balancing their family.my best wishes are with them…..

  18. Anusha p

    thanku to all my indian enterpreneurships its very proud of to me and also its very inspire to all thanku and all d the best

    1. RAM

      Nice..

  19. Nisschala Evangeline Choppala

    Its really nIce to know about these lovely & wonderful women of India and ofcourse proud to be a woman & Indian !!! 🙂

  20. mariyam

    i want to be an entrepreneur its really pleasure for me to being an women entrepreneur of my country like all of them above.

  21. babita chopra

    oh its a proud previlage to read about these women who have made their life worth living and showing to the world that they are no less than men! wish to be there very soon!

  22. bhanu

    my most amazing dream is to become a big big lady entrepreneur in this world

  23. utpala

    behind every successful man is a women,,… whereas behind every successful woman is her own fire to achieve!

  24. saranya t

    I am proud of you top 10 entreprenuers……….

  25. Saurabh

    i wnt and i’ll become the top entrepreneur of the world..
    seeing all this i’ve also gained encouragement fr becoming an great entrepreneur

  26. Vijay

    Inspired a lot….I feel happy to c al these entrpr

  27. sajju

    i feel happy by reading this top stories nd i suggest people to have big dream to full fill desires like these entrepreneurs

  28. shaheer ok

    i feel so proud to be an Indian!!!!!!!!1

  29. manju

    be proud to be indian

  30. priya

    i feel so proud to be an Indian@

    1. ariya

      ss

  31. lijinofmary

    Realy I feel very happy to see,one day my name also enter this place…………….OH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. lijinofmary

    realy i am very feel to see.one day my name also enter this place

  33. Vinay

    I feel so proud to be indian.

  34. viji

    really am proud to be an Indian for having such a good and the best woman entrepreneurs in our country……

  35. surbhi kansal

    it is rightly said dat its nt possible 4 a bird to fly vid 1 wing bt our country s trng to do so by denyng women as 2nd wing. bt nw dey all hve 2 acpt dt nobody cn rule d country vidout women.

  36. surbhi kansal

    gr8 2 see women entrpr…..

  37. nisarmehdi

    i feel so proud to be ind

  38. Sujatachavan678

    wt about sudha murthy????? she is the most multifaceted lady n pioneer for narayan murthy in establishment of infosys…

  39. Deskjet123

    One question, How many of these nice ladies have made a living on their own.. I mean without inheriting their family business.. Entrepreneurship is someone who takes an innovative business also with risk of it.
    Also would like add am not discrediting the ladies with what they have achieved in life.. just that this is an askew list.

    1. Aashish Birgi

      I agree with you!

  40. mani

    What happened to patricia nary an.google patricia sandeepha for details.

  41. Simranjeet Kaur

    I am gonna join list soon 🙂
    Wish me luck..!!! 🙂

  42. shraddha

    i hope i’ll be in this list after few years….. wish me luck!!!!

  43. diya

    AMAZING…i m inspired

  44. uzma naheed

    .thnks for the information about women business acievers .please record the business achievements of shehnaz hussain too who spread her business of herbal cosmetis in th world

  45. Ratna Kishore

    nice to hear these names but where are people like Sudha Murthy and Indira Nooyi.. ???

  46. Noboru Tabe

    An increasing number of women entrepreneurs is meant as a healthy sign of social progress in India.. I am quite optimistic of the future of India ,should the entrepreneurship be further augmented for potential womankind. Greetings from TOKYO!

  47. lifemja

    hello sir plz tell me the weekly income of these powerfull womens……..????????

  48. kamya

    i also want to become like these women.they give inspiration to achieve my goal.

  49. dhanya

    i want to be one among these…………i try to achieve till death…………….i need to serve my MOTHER INDIA and her CHILDRENS………………..

  50. ami

    AMM… umm… i need to get infomartion about the entreprenuers of india..:-/…. need help..

  51. deepthi

    go girls goooooo… will join you soon 🙂

    1. aakanksha

      Nice comment 🙂
      All the best.

    2. aakanksha

      Nice ……………………..:)

  52. Keerthana Chiluka

    feel great and you are to be known by every woman

  53. usha baudh

    ye sabhi top 10 ki mahila bhart ki hone k baad bhi bharat ki mahilao ko is desh k purush-pradhan samaj ki mansik gulami se mukt karnae me kya kisi bhi tarah ka koi yogdaan kar rahi h……..asli .education to vo h jo aapko gyan de…sahi-galat ki pahchan karne ki eyes de…..kewal top degree k base p competition beat kar k top post ko achive karna is not progress…..q ki is desh ki education is desh ki dharmik-sanskritik bhavna ko kabhi b graceup anhi kar sakti….balki high-educated person utna hi jyada andh-bhakti ka shikar paya ja raha h…utna hi jyada sadio purani sadi-gali Sanskriti-manyatao ka gulam paya ja raha h…..utna hi jayada sadio purne dharmik grantho ka unki manyatao ka adig paya ja raha h……..jub tak desh ki educated mahila…jo top p h…is mansik gulami or sdio ki bedio k khilaf awaz nahi karengi…..is desh ko dharm-jativad-riti-rivaj-parampara ka danav isi tarah desh ko gareeb-gulam-ilitrate-kuposhit-lachar banay rahega………so pls…..give a hand in real progress,which start from the door of mahila……………………namo buddhay.

  54. harika

    impressive and i had learnt more from these people

  55. lalitha

    very inspiring me

  56. Raj

    Bas bhi karo! Do you think by chanting you will become entrepreneurs?

  57. Ridhi Murari

    It is very inspiring to see these women from our own country doing so well independently !

  58. K.VENKATESAN. MBA

    Hello mam Miss.Ranjana Kumar I am VENKATESAN MBA IN FINANCE SECTOR. Has have good business women in IndIa. I so happy to see your success and my wishs. In my future has become a business men in india. so i need an idea and information for choosing the business. To send Mail ID.

    1. DANIEL

      GD

  59. DANIEL

    i am surprised to see this i have just came this web for project but when i read this see how the women are SO BE COURAGES

  60. DANIEL

    REALY WONDER

  61. Sia

    In future i will also be a good entrepreneur

  62. Rahul Yadav

    Feeling awesome to see this great and inspiration list of indian women.

  63. Name *Kowsalya G

    awesome….. its realy inspiration to us
    I have lot of dreams and I found key
    to achieve my dreams to reality.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

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A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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