Ratan Tata refuses to postpone his retirement from 2012

Tata Group Chairman Ratan Tata today made it clear there were no change in his plans to retire in 2012 even as he assured a successor who is committed to "ethics and value".

business Updated: Nov 15, 2010 17:08 IST

Tata Group Chairman Ratan Tata on Monday made it clear there were no change in his plans to retire in 2012 even as he assured a successor who is committed to "ethics and value".

Tata, who took the $ 72 billion dollar company to new heights and made the world's cheapest car Nano, has already announced he will quit office by the end of 2012.

"I don't want to change my deadline I set for my retirement. There are lots of sacrifices, one has to make in terms of personal life. I wanted my life back. I want to enjoy the things that I wanted to do," the top industrialist said in Dehradun.

In August this year, the Board of Tata Sons Ltd has formed a selection committee comprising five members, including an external member for eventually deciding on a suitable successor to Ratan N Tata.

"There is no such thing indispensably individual. The day I succeeded JRD Tata, I felt in very large shoes. I knew that I cannot be another JRD and I have to be my own person", Tata said in reply to a question after delivering a lecture in Dehradun.

"I believe my successor will be his own person and hopefully will do things for the country and the group the way we have been doing till now or much better.

"I ferociously wanted to ensure that my successor has total commitment for ethics and values, we fought for years now," Tata said.

The top industrialist was responding to a query from audience after delivering 8th Uttarakhand foundation lecture on "India in the 21st century: Opportunities and Challenges" on the occasion of 10th anniversary of formation of hill state.

Tata observed there are two kinds of persons, one, who go back home on their own feet and another, "who go in a box".

"I have told my shareholders that I do not want to go back in a box," he said.

When asked to reveal his mantra for success without compromising with ethics and values, Tata said he did not have a methodology in this regard but he has an example to tell the audience.

"Several years ago, Tatas were trying to set up a domestic airlines in collaboration with Singapore Airlines. Even though we were pioneer in airline industry, we had enormous problems if you remember through the reports in the media.

"We approached three Prime Ministers also. But an individual thwarted our efforts to form the airlines." he said.

Later, Tata said a fellow industrialist commented, "You are stupid people. The Minister was asking for Rs 15 cr."

First Published: Nov 15, 2010 16:49 IST