Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been ranked among the top 10 most powerful people in the world by Forbes in a list that has been topped by Russian President Vladimir Putin for a fourth straight year and had US President-elect Donald Trump in the second place.

Modi ranks 9th on the Forbes list of 74 of the World's Most Powerful People.
Forbes said India's populist Prime Minister remains hugely popular in his country of 1.3 billion people.

The list has been topped by Putin, who retains the title of the world's most powerful person for four years running. US President Obama comes in on the 48th spot.

On the second spot is 70-year-old Trump who will become the first billionaire president of the United States, after upsetting Hillary Clinton in a surprising election victory.

The list includes Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani on the 38th spot. Forbes said the 59-year-old oil and gas tycoon sparked a price war in India's hyper competitive telecom market with the launch of 4G phone service Jio at the annual shareholder meeting of his Reliance Industries in September.

The list also includes Microsoft's India-born CEO Satya Nadella on the 51st spot, with Forbes saying the 49-year-old has steered the company away from a failing mobile strategy and focused on other lines of business, including cloud computing and augmented reality.

The third most powerful person in the world also happens to be the most powerful woman: Angela Merkel, the chancellor of Germany and the backbone of the European Union.

The list includes Xi on the 4th spot, Pope Francis (5), Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates (7), Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (10), French President Francois Hollande (23), Apple CEO Tim Cook (32), North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (43) and ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (57).