Naveen Jindal has topped the executive pay charts for listed companies in the country with a package of Rs 73.42 crore for the last fiscal 2011-12, which grew by over Rs six crore from previous year.
Jindal, Chairman and Managing Director of Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL), was followed by Sun TV Network's Kalanithi and Kavery Maran (Rs 57.01 crore each), Hero MotoCorp's Pawan Munjal (Rs 34.47 crore) and Brijmohan Lall Munjal (Rs 34.44 crore) among the five top-paid executives.
These pay packages include salary, perquisites, profit-linked incentives or commissions and other benefits.
Jindal has remained top-paid executive for the second consecutive year now, after he dislodged Kalanithi Maran from the pole position in the year 2010-11.
The collective pay of the 10 top-paid executives rose by Rs 43 crore (over 12 per cent) to Rs 387 crore in fiscal ended March 31, 2012, as per the data available with the companies that have so far published their respective annual reports.
Interestingly, the pay packages declined for only two -- Kalanithi and Kavery Maran -- among these ten in 2011-12, while all others saw their remunerations fatten in the year.
Madras Cements' P R R Rajha was ranked 6th (Rs 29.34 crore), followed by Maruti Suzuki's Shinzo Nakanishi (Rs 28.14 crore), BGR Energy's BG Raghupaty (Rs 25.98 crore), Tata Motors' former chief Carl-Peter Forster (Rs 23.97 crore) and Divi's Labs' Murali K Divi (Rs 23.15 crore).
Reliance Industries chief Mukesh Ambani, once the country's highest-paid executive, was not in the top-ten and was ranked 15th with a remuneration of Rs 15 crore, which has remained unchanged for four consecutive years now.
Those ranked higher than Ambani include Bharti Airtel's Sunil Mittal (Rs 21.3 crore), Hindalco's D Bhattacharya (Rs 19.5 crore), JSW Steel's Sajjan Jindal (Rs 18.18 crore) and Amara Raja Batteries' Jayadev Galla (Rs 17.23 crore).
Among these, Mittal and Sajjan Jindal saw their packages decline during the year 2011-12.
The collective remuneration of 15 highest-paid executives rose by about Rs 38 crore to Rs 478 crore.
Interestingly, there are only four Sensex companies, whose top executives figure among the ten top-paid persons.
However, a majority of the Sensex companies, which are considered as the country's top-30 blue chip firms, saw their top executives' packages rise 2011-12, even as industry titans like Mukesh Ambani, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Azim Premji and Sunil Mittal either took a pay cut or capped their salaries.
Mukesh's younger brother Anil Ambani also saw his total remuneration from the four main companies of Reliance Group fall by nearly two-third during the year, although none of his group firms are currently part of the Sensex.