Rishi Sunak, the Conservative Party leader, became the first British Prime Minister of Indian descent on Monday after his rival Penny Mordaunt backed out pledging full support.
He will be the United Kingdom’s third Prime Minister in seven months. Liz Truss resigned on October 20 after only 45 days in office after winning the party’s internal election and succeeding Boris Johnson.
Sunak is the UK’s youngest and first Prime Minister of colour. Here’s a look at Indian-origin Rishi Sunak’s lavish lifestyle and unusual family background.
The Uncommon Family Background Of UK’s Next PM:
Sunak, one of Britain’s wealthiest politicians, is married to Akshata Murty, the daughter of NR Narayana Murthy, co-founder of Infosys. The couple married in 2009 and has two daughters, Anoushka and Krishna.
Akshata Murty, the Indian wife of Britain’s next Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, is fabulously wealthy thanks to her billionaire father, a fortune that has sparked debate as ordinary people grapple with a cost-of-living crisis.
N R Narayana Murthy, Sunak’s father-in-law, co-founded tech behemoth Infosys in 1981. The outsourcing behemoth, now worth around $75 billion, aided India’s transformation into the “world’s back office.”
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Sunak’s mother-in-law Sudha meanwhile became Tata Motors’ first female engineer after famously complaining to the chairman via postcard about the company’s stipulation that “lady candidates need not apply.”
She is known as “India’s favourite granny,” and she is a prolific author and a powerful force in social work, having established 60,000 libraries and 16,000 toilets while remaining humble despite her enormous wealth.
Murty’s stake in Infosys is worth around $700 million, making her richer than the late Queen Elizabeth II, whose personal wealth was estimated by the 2021 Sunday Times Rich List to be around $460 million.
Rishi Sunak: One Of The Wealthiest British Politicians:
The 42-year-old has also earned tens of millions in dividends in recent years, but her “non-domicile” status in the UK shielded some of this income from British taxes.
To assuage some of the resulting public anger that hurt her husband politically, Murty said in April that she would pay UK tax on all her worldwide income.
“I do this because I want to, not because the rules require me to,” she tweeted. “My decision… will not change the fact that India remains the country of my birth, citizenship, parents’ home and place of domicile. But I love the UK too.”
10/ My decision to pay UK tax on all my worldwide income will not change the fact that India remains the country of my birth, citizenship, parents’ home and place of domicile.
But I love the UK too.
— Akshata Murty (@anmurty) April 9, 2022
The couple, who have two daughters and a photogenic dog, continue to be extremely wealthy, and their extravagant lifestyle has not gone unnoticed by the British media at a time when ordinary people are struggling.
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They spent 400,000 pounds on a swimming pool at their country estate in August. Sunak wore Prada loafers to a construction site during a campaign visit in July, news agency AFP reported.
Murty and Sunak own at least four properties, including a five-bedroom house in Kensington, London, worth £7 million. They also have a residence in Santa Monica, California.
Before launching her own fashion label, Akshata Designs, in 2010, she dabbled in finance and marketing.
Murty collaborates with artists in remote villages to create Indian-meets-Western fusion clothes that are “vehicles to discovering Indian culture,” according to a 2011 Vogue profile.
She told the magazine, “I believe we live in a materialistic society.” “People are becoming more conscious about the world they live in. Doing good is fashionable.”
(With Inputs From Agencies)