They emerged from places as diverse as ashrams, politics and boardrooms to become unlikely stars on Youtube, Twitter and the focus of debates on Television and drawing rooms.
Their deeds or misdeeds gave 2010 the colour it needed. Imagine how boring the newspapers would have been without a Swami Nityananda, Niira Radia, A Raja or even Suresh Kalmadi.
Here's looking at the top ten controversial figures who raised hell and provided good copy, unwittingly or otherwise, in 2010.
Text: Salil Jose
Image: TV journalists record footage of unseen CBI officials at former Indian telecom minister A. Raja's residence in New Delhi on December 8, 2010. (Photograph copyright AFP)