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Trump, IS chief Baghdadi in race for Time’s Person of the Year

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New York: Islamic State leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump were among the eight candidates shortlisted by Time magazine today for its annual ‘Person of the Year’ title.

Time magazine editors chose a shortlist of candidates for the ‘2015 Person of the Year’.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani and Google’s India-born CEO Sundar Pichai were among the initial 58 global leaders, business chiefs and pop icons that Time had named as contenders for its annual honour but the three did not make the final shortlist announced here.

Modi was a contender for the honour last year also and while he was not chosen the Person of the Year by Time editors, he was named winner of the readers’ poll, securing more than 16 per cent of the almost five million votes cast.

Among the final eight contenders are Al-Baghdadi, who Time said “as leader of ISIS has inspired followers to both fight in his self-declared caliphate of Iraq and Syria, and also stage attacks in countries like Tunisia and France”.

The final list also includes ‘Black Lives Matter’ activists, who have protested inequality towards African Americans, especially in their treatment by law enforcement.

On Trump, Time said his populist rhetoric has made him the frontrunner in the race for the Republican presidential candidacy and stirred debate about the party’s future.

The global leaders on the list include German chancellor Angela Merkel, Iran president Hassan Rouhani and Russian president Vladimir Putin who “has defied Western sanctions over his country’s military activity in Ukraine to play a critical but precarious role in the war on ISIS”.

Time said Rouhani is seeking to bring his country “out of pariah status and repair its sanctions-crippled economy by pursuing a nuclear deal with the West”.

Transgender reality TV star Caitlyn Jenner, who transitioned from Olympic winner Bruce Jenner, and Uber CEO Travis Kalanick are also in the final eight.

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