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UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Mother-in-Law Nominated to Indian Parliament’s Upper House

Sudha Murthy, aged 73 and married to NR Narayana Murthy, the billionaire co-founder of Infosys, has been nominated to serve in the upper house of India’s parliament. Their daughter, Akshata, married Mr. Sunak, who has held the position of prime minister since 2022, in 2009.

Most members of India’s upper house are elected, but 12 of them, typically high achievers, are nominated by the president for a six-year term.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed the appointment as an embodiment of “Nari Shakti” (women’s power), underscoring the pivotal role of women in shaping the nation’s destiny. He lauded Ms. Murthy’s contributions to various fields including social work, philanthropy, and education.

Last year, the Indian government conferred upon her the “Padma Bhushan,” India’s third-highest civilian honor, in recognition of her significant contributions to social work. Ms. Murthy, an engineer by training, expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve her country, particularly on International Women’s Day.

She expressed her excitement about the nomination and affirmed her commitment to utilize the platform to serve the people of India effectively.

According to Forbes, Ms. Murthy’s husband boasts an estimated net worth of $4.7 billion (£3.6 billion). Narayana Murthy once borrowed $250 from his wife to launch Infosys, now India’s seventh-largest company and the first Indian company listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Sudha Murthy is a familiar face across India, often appearing on TV chat shows. She humorously recounted how UK border control officials initially thought she was jesting when she mentioned her stay at Downing Street.

Ms. Murthy noted that while she successfully steered her husband into business, her daughter has elevated her husband to the position of UK prime minister.

Their daughter, Akshata Murthy, holds shares in Infosys and, along with Mr. Sunak, featured in the Sunday Times’ 2022 Rich List with an estimated combined wealth of £730 million ($937 million).

Amid Mr. Sunak’s political career, Akshata’s finances have faced scrutiny. In April 2022, she announced her intention to pay UK taxes on her overseas income, relinquishing her non-domicile (non-dom) status to avoid any distractions for her husband.

Non-dom UK residents are not legally obligated to pay UK taxes on overseas income, but this special tax status is slated for abolition in April 2025.

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