Rich get richer in recession-hit UK
In 2009, a year of global financial crisis, Britain’s 1,000 richest people — headed for the sixth year running by Indian-born steel tycoon Laxmi Mittal — increased their cumulative wealth by £77 billion (Rs 6.5 lakh crore) — the largest rise since the Sunday Times Rich List began 21 years ago, the paper reported on Sunday.
“Much of the increase is a result of the rebound in stock markets and property values after the government injected hundreds of billions of pounds into banks and the wider economy,” it said.
Despite a year that saw the economic crisis wipe out £155 bn (Rs 13.2 lakh crore) from the wealth of the richest, the number of British billionaires rose by 10 from the previous year’s list to 53. But it was short of the pre-recession 75.
At the same time, the newspaper said, many wealthy men and women from abroad were heading for Britain to stay — led by Indians. “(Rich Indians) live in an Anglophile society in the higher reaches of Delhi and Mumbai — apart from the heat and the curry it’s much the same in London,” said the report.
While Mittal — whose fortune rose from £10.8 bn (Rs 91,800 crore) to £22.4 bn (Rs 1.9 lakh crore) — is well known on London’s social circuit, new billionaires of Indian origin — like Anil Agarwal, No. 10 on the list, or Cyrus Vandrevala, who bought a £10 mn (Rs 85 crore) property last year — have also begun making London a second home.