Ambani wedding guest list revealed: World leaders and Bollywood stars head to Jamnagar

Lavish three-day celebration is a precursor to main wedding, set to be held in Mumbai in July

Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant at their engagement party on January 19, 2023. Reuters
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Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Bob Iger will join Indian business and political leaders and cricket stars as well as Bollywood celebrities for a pre-wedding event to celebrate the marriage of Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant.

Ambani, 28, is the youngest son of Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani, one of the world's richest men, while Merchant, 29, is the daughter of industrialist Viren Merchant.

The lavish three-day celebration, to be held from Friday to Saturday, in Jamnagar, Gujarat, on India's west coast, is also set to feature performances by pop star Rihanna, Punjabi singer Diljit Dosanjh, Bollywood music duo Ajay-Atul and American illusionist David Blaine, according to an official Reliance Industries guest list seen by The National.

The event is a precursor to the main wedding on July 12 in Mumbai.

Besides Meta's Zuckerberg and Disney's Iger, other top business leaders attending the Jamnagar celebration include Sundar Pichai, chief executive of Alphabet; Larry Fink, chairman and chief executive of BlackRock; Shantanu Narayen, chief executive of Adobe; and Jay Lee, executive chairman of Samsung Electronics.

They will be joined by the governor of Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, Yasir Al-Rumayyan; former White House adviser Ivanka Trump; World Economic Forum chairperson Klaus Schwab; former Prime Minister of Australia Kevin Rudd; journalist Fareed Zakaria; and former Prime Minister of Sweden Carl Bildt among others.

Qatar's Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani, is also set to attend, along with Bhutan's King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Queen Jetsun Pema.

Indian cricketers Sachin Tendulkar, M S Dhoni, Rohit Sharma, K L Rahul and Hardik and Krunal Pandya will also attend.

Bollywood will be represented by Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Twinkle Khanna, Ajay Devgn, Kajol, Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Ranveer Singh, Deepika Padukone, Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Vicky Kaushal, Katrina Kaif and more.

South Indian superstar Rajinikanth will also attend.

The groom and bride-to-be got engaged at a Rajasthan temple in December 2022 and held a star-studded engagement in January last year, attended by the who's who of Bollywood.

A number of pre-wedding ceremonies have already taken place, including a lagan lakhvanu ceremony held earlier this month. During the traditional Gujarati ceremony, the official wedding invite is first offered to the gods to seek their blessing, before it is sent out to guests.

In their invite for the pre-wedding event, the Ambanis said they chose Jamnagar because it was “the place closest to our hearts”.

“Over the years, we planted more than 10 million trees in this arid region, transforming it into a bustling green community,” the invitation reads “Taking the spirit of this initiative further, Anant has lovingly nurtured this complex into a haven of care and compassion for over thousands of rescued animals.

“Over the past 25 years, we've built our fondest memories in Jamnagar. And it is the place closest to our hearts. We look forward to having you as we celebrate the beginning of Radhika and Anant's wedding festivities.”

The Ambanis are not ones to cut corners at family weddings. Anant's sister Isha Ambani's star-studded 7 billion rupee nuptials in 2018, is still the most expensive Indian wedding of all time and included a performance by Beyonce.

Updated: February 27, 2024, 2:32 PM