India’s external affair minister Sushma Swaraj has featured in the Global Thinkers List for the year 2016, a compilation of world leaders who made a major mark in their field.
Swaraj was categorised as a ‘decision maker’, one of the nine titles into which the foreign affairs magazine divided their list. Her name featured alongside leaders such as US Presidential candidate for 2016 Hillary Clinton and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
‘The challengers’, ‘the innovators’, ‘the advocates’ and ‘the stewards’ were among other categories under which the thinkers were listed by the US magazine.
FP commended Swaraj for ‘fashioning a model brand of Twitter diplomacy’. The Indian foreign minister has been involved in social media-initiated diplomatic efforts to bring home thousands of Indian workers who got stranded in Saudi Arabia after crash in oil prices, and helping out Indians in need overseas, among other tasks she has undertaken.
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) November 6, 2016
Her use of Twitter to communicate with the Indian diaspora community found a special mention, with the publication noting how she had earned the nickname ‘the common tweeple’s leader’.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 14, 2016
Barely a week ago, the veteran politician was nominated for Financial Times’ Women of the Year for 2016. The London-based pink paper dubbed her as the ‘agony aunt’, a reference to how numerous occasions on which she has gone out of her way to solve the problems of Indians who get in touch with her through Twitter.
Swaraj is hugely popular in Indian and overseas media, and enjoys a following of over 6 million on Twitter. In the past, she has earned nicknames like ‘most badass foreign minister’ by BuzzFeed and ‘Supermom of the state’ by The Washington Post.
The minister got a recent kidney transplant and is recuperating in a Delhi hospital.