Mukesh Ambani, the head of Reliance Industries has been named as the richest person in Asia and India with a net worth of $92 billion or over Rs 7,71,000 crore in 2023, as per the latest Forbes list. On the other hand, the second wealthiest person in India, Gautam Adani who has a net worth of $68 billion or over Rs 5,66,000 crore.
Mir Osman Ali Khan regarded as the wealthiest individual in his era. And the first billionaire of independent India. Served as the last Nizam of Hyderabad. Inherited in 1911 he held vast wealth for about four decades. The tales of Mir Osman Ali’s riches go beyond imagination. When adjusted for inflation, his net worth is rivaled by only one living person today – the unconventional American billionaire Elon Musk.
There are tales of the Nizam’s wealth, including a diamond used as a paperweight. And extravagant gifts like diamond jewelery presented to guests. Such as Queen Elizabeth, the British princess at that time. He founded the Hyderabad State Bank. And developed essential infrastructure like electricity, railways, roads and an airline for his state. The Nizam, known for his generosity, made substantial donations to esteemed educational institutions. Like Jamia Nizamia, Banaras Hindu University, Aligarh Muslim University and Darul Uloom Deoband.
Mir Osman Ali Khan, the wealthiest Nizam, graced the cover of TIME magazine in 1937, dubbed the “richest man on the planet.” With an adjusted net worth of around $236 billion (Rs 18 lakh 68 thousand Crores) in his early ‘40s, the seventh Nizam of Hyderabad enjoyed a lavish lifestyle. Interestingly, Mir Osman Ali Khan used the rare Jacob diamond, a 185-carat gem resembling a lime, as a paperweight, valued at Rs 100 crores, as reported by TimesNow. Additionally, he possessed an impressive fleet of 50 Rolls-Royce cars, including the highly sought-after Silver Ghost Throne Car.
Yet the Nizam experienced challenging times as well. Mir Osman Ali’s rule concluded shortly after independence in September 1948. The Indian government took steps to limit the sale of his private properties. Towards the end, he allegedly encountered significant financial difficulties. And explored various means such as auctioning his valuables to replenish his funds.
The man who was once the world’s wealthiest but lost 70 billion dollars
Masayoshi Son, who briefly held the title of the world’s richest man, was wealthier than Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Mukesh Ambani, Gautam Adani, and others at one point. According to Forbes, Son’s net worth is around 23 billion dollars, significantly less than Mukesh Ambani’s 92 billion dollars and Gautam Adani’s 50 billion dollars. Masayoshi Son, the billionaire founder and CEO of SoftBank Group, once heavily invested in Indian startups like Ola, Oyo, and Paytm. He also manages Son’s Vision Funds, with investments from companies like Apple, Qualcomm, Foxconn, Larry Ellison, and Saudi Arabia’s sovereign fund.
Born in Japan, Son is a third-generation Zainichi Korean. Despite his father’s involvement in illegal business, the family became the first in town to own a car. After schooling in Japan and pursuing better education in the US, Son founded SoftBank Corp in 1981, using funds from selling his video game company, Unison World.
An early investor in Yahoo and Alibaba, Son briefly became the world’s richest person before a stock market crash reduced his net worth from 78 billion to 8 billion dollars. Despite many failed investments, he regained wealth after acquiring Vodafone Japan in 2006, and his current net worth is 23 billion dollars.