Prime Minister Narendra Modi has won the popular online reader’s poll for TIME Person of the Year, 2016. The United States news magazine, Time, holds an annual feature called Person of the Year which profiles a person or a group who “for better or for worse, the person or group of people who have had the largest global impact over the past 12 months”. While the TIME Person of the Year will be revealed on December 7, the online reader’s poll has chosen Narendra Modi as the winner with 18 percent of the vote.
While the number may seem small, it is far ahead of what his closest competitors have acquired. Barack Obama, Donald Trump, and Julian Assange all received 7 percent of the vote, while Hillary Clinton received 4 percent and Mark Zuckerberg 2 percent.
Modi has gained high approval from Indians after ratifying the Paris Climate Change Agreement. Recently, he took a risky and controversial decision of banning 500 and 1000 rupee notes as legal tender in order to curb corruption and the rise of black money. While his decision provided a good opportunity for further inquiry, looks like his move has paid off for the better.
It is not uncommon for leaders of countries to be awarded this. In fact, German Chancellor Angela Merkel was the TIME Person of the Year for 2015. Almost every United States President has been named Person of the Year. After Mahatma Gandhi in 1930, Narendra Modi is the only Indian who has gotten close to winning this award. Let’s wait to find the final verdict on December 7.