Below mentioned people are who made Chennai proud.

Arts and Language
  • R.K. Narayan (1906–2001), writer


  • Indra Nooyi, Chairperson & CEO of PepsiCo
  • Sundar Pichai – CEO of Google
  • Indra Nooyi, Chairperson & CEO of PepsiCo
  • Venu Srinivasan, Chairman and Managing Director, TVS Motors Ltd.
  • Mallika Srinivasan, Chairman and Managing Director, Tractors and Farm Equipment Limited
  • N. Srinivasan, Chairman and Managing Director, India Cements Ltd.
  • A. Vellayan, Chairman, Murugappa Group of Companies
  • M. A. M. Ramaswamy, Chettinad Cements Group of Companies and ex-Pro Chancellor, Annamalai University, Chidambaram.
  • A. C. Muthiah, former Chairman, Southern Petrochemicals of India Corporation (SPIC) group of companies
  • Prathap C. Reddy, Chairman, Apollo Hospitals
  • Bhargav Sri Prakash, founder & CEO of FriendsLearn, entrepreneur and hedge fund manager
  • Naveen Selvadurai, Co-founder of Foursquare
  • Natarajan Chandrasekaran, Chairperson & Current Chairman of TATA Group
  • Keshav R Murugesh, Chief Executive Officer & Director of WNS Global Services
  • Rahul Mammen Mappillai, Managing Director of MRF Limited
  • Prathap C. Reddy, Chairman of Apollo Hospitals
  • Kalanithi Maran, Chairman & MD, Sun Group
  • R. G. Chandramogan, Chairman of Hatsun Agro Product
  • Ms. Gayathri Sriram, MD of UCAL Auto Pvt. Ltd
  • C K Ranganathan, Chairman of CavinKare
  • Chinnakannan Sivasankaran, founder of Aircel
  • B. Muthuraman, Vice Chairman of Tata Steel


  • Ramayya Krishnan, Dean of Heinz College and H. John Heinz III, W. W. Cooper and Ruth F. Cooper Professor of Management science and Information systems at Carnegie Mellon University
  • V. L. Ethiraj, Founder, Ethiraj College for Women
  • Rajalakshmi Parthasarathy, Founder, Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan
  • Munirathna Anandakrishnan, Former Chairman, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur & Former Vice-Chancellor, Anna University
  • Bala V. Balachandran, Founder, Dean & Chairman, Great Lakes Institute of Management
  • V. M. Muralidharan, Chairman, Ethiraj College for Women
  • Jeppiaar, Founder, Jeppiaar Educational Trust and Founder Chancellor, Sathyabama University
  • Subra Suresh, President of Carnegie Mellon University, Former Dean of the School of Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Former Director of the National Science Foundation


  • Arun Krishnamurthy, Founder, Environmentalist Foundation of India

Films and Entertainment

  • Shivaji Ganesan, actor and the first International Award winner of India
  • Kamal Haasan, Thespian, Actor, Director, Producer, Screen Writer – India’s best actor
  • Rajinikanth (born 1950), Actor, Superstar
  • Dhanush, Thespian and playback singer and producer
  • Ashok Amritraj, Hollywood producer
  • Padma Lakshmi, Cookbook author, actress, model and television host
  • Ajith Kumar, Thespian and Racer
  • M. G. Ramachandran, Actor, politician, producer, director
  • J. Jayalalithaa – Actress & politician
  • A. R. Rahman (born 1966), music composer, winner of multiple awards including two Academy Awards, two Grammys and a Golden Globe
  • Vijay, Thespian
  • Vikram, Actor
  • Ilaiyaraja, Indian music composer and Symphonic Maestro
  • Suriya Sivakumar, Thespian
  • Yuvan Shankar Raja, First Cypress-International-Award Winning Creative music Composer
  • Santhanam, Actor
  • Anirudh Ravichander – music composer & winner of multiple awards
  • Vijay Yesudas (born 1979), Playback Singer
  • Pete Best (born 1941), early Beatles drummer
  • Mary Hignett (born 1916), actress
  • Engelbert Humperdinck (born 1936), pop singer
  • Mani Ratnam (born 1956), film director
  • Hema Malini, actress
  • Rekha, actress
  • Sridevi, actress
  • Jayasudha, actress
  • Jayabharathi, actress
  • Lisa Haydon, actress
  • S. Janaki, Playback singer
  • P. Susheela, Playback singer
  • M. S. Viswanathan, music composer
  • K. V. Mahadevan, music composer
  • S.P. Balasubrahmanyam, music composer, playback singer
  • Sumalatha, actress
  • Lakshmi Narayan, actress
  • Allu Arjun, actor
  • Ram Charan Teja, actor
  • Dulquer Salman, actor
  • Lakshmi Manchu, actress
  • Sundeep Kishan, actor
  • Priya Anand, actress
  • Shruthi Hassan, actress
  • Samantha Ruth Prabhu, actress
  • Siddharth Narayan, actor
  • Trisha, actress
  • Arvind Swamy, actor and businessman
  • Vijay Sethupathi, Thespian
  • Sivakarthikeyan, Thespian
  • Shiva Rajkumar,Sandalwood actor
  • Raghavendra Rajkumar,Sandalwood actor
  • Puneeth Rajkumar,Sandalwood actor


  • S.Shankar, A tamil film director
  • K.Balachander, A tamil film director
  • selvaraghavan, A tamil film director
  • Nalan Kumarasamy, A tamil film director
  • Karthik Subburaj, A tamil film director


  • Sri Sabhapati Swami (b. 1840), 19th century yogi and author
  • Paruthiyur K. Santhanaraman, author of numerous books on religious topics


  • A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, physics, President of India
  • C.V. Raman, Nobel Prize, physics
  • Kariamanickam Srinivasa Krishnan, Nobel Prize, physics
  • Subra Suresh – scientist & researcher
  • Kannan Soundararajan, mathematician
  • John Henry Constantine Whitehead (1904–1960), British mathematician
  • Alan Garnett Davenport, engineer
  • Srinivasa Ramanujan, mathematician, Fellow of the Royal Society
  • Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, Nobel Prize, physics
  • M. S. Swaminathan, Agriculture Scientist of India

Social Entrepreneurs

  • Kirthi Jayakumar


  • Buchi Babu Naidu- Father of South Indian Cricket.
  • Cotah Ramaswami- Represented India in both International Cricket & Tennis.
  • M.Baliah Naidu- Cricketer
  • Aditya Patel (born 1988), Indian professional racing driver
  • Viswanathan Anand (born 1969), chess grandmaster and the undisputed world chess champion from 2007 until 2013
  • Ravichandran Ashwin, cricketer
  • Nasser Hussain (born 1968), English cricketer
  • Dinesh Karthik (born 1985), Indian cricketer
  • Sharath Kamal (born 1982), India table tennis player
  • Hemang Badani, former Indian cricketer
  • Badrinath, Indian cricketer
  • Krishnamachari Srikkanth (born 1959), former Indian cricketer
  • Lakshmipathy Balaji, Indian cricketer
  • Murali Vijay (born 1984), current Indian cricketer
  • Sadagoppan Ramesh, former Indian cricketer
  • Srinivasaraghavan Venkataraghavan, former Indian cricketer
  • W. V. Raman, former Indian crickter
  • Vijay Amritraj (born 1953), tennis player, Sports Commentator and Actor
  • Anand Amritraj (born 1952), tennis player, Businessman
  • Ramanathan Krishnan, tennis player
  • Ramesh Krishnan, tennis player and coach
  • Dipika Pallikal (born 1991), squash player, WISPA titles and first Indian woman to break into the top 10 in the WSA rankings
  • Joshna Chinappa (born 1986), squash player, British Squash Championship
  • Karun Chandhok (born 1984), racing driver, Formula One and sports commentator
  • Rajini Krishnan, Indian Motorcycle racer
  • Mahaveer Raghunathan (born 1998), racing driver
  • Alisha abdullah –  Indian racing driver. She is the country’s first female national racing champion.


  • Praveena Solomon, crematorium manager
  • Kumaran Mahalingam, Geologist, Standup Paddler and a Conservation Educator

Chennai has been included in the list of UNESCO’s Creative Cities Network for its rich musical tradition. Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed the inclusion of the Tamil Nadu capital which is steeped in multi-layered history.