PM Narendra Modi
PM Narendra ModiReuters

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chennai-born Google's CEO Sundar Pichai and the chairman of Reliance Industries Mukesh Ambani are among the 58 candidates for 'Person of the Year 2015' honour conducted by The Time magazine.

The winner of title will be declared next month and it will be conferred upon the person who "most influenced the news this year for better or worse," the publication said.

"Modi has encouraged foreign direct investment in India and is trying to modernise the world's largest democracy," The Economic Times quoted Time, as saying.

"But the Indian leader has also faced controversy over what some see as right-wing extremism," it added.

Modi had also found a place among the contenders last year, but did not secure the title. However, he had emerged as the winner of the readers' poll last year, garnering over 16% of the nearly five million votes.

Pichai, who was promoted as the CEO of Google in August, is also among the contenders along with India's richest person Ambani.

"After 11 years at Google, most recently as co-founder Larry Page's right hand, Pichai assumed the tech giant's top job," Time said.

After joining as a 'low key manager ' in Google in 2004, Pichai moved up to top ranks at the company following the successful launch of operating system Google Chrome in 2008. He also led the launch of Gmail and Google Maps.

In the voting conducted for Person of the Year 2015 title so far, Modi has already secured 1.3% of the votes, similar to that of Pichai and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The other prominent contenders for the title include US President Barack Obama, French President Francois Hollande, Chinese President Xi Jinping, ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Tesla Motors  head Elon Musk, Apple CEO Tim Cook and last year's winner Pope Francis.

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