Monday, November 15, 2010

The Unfulfilled Dream of Ratan Tata

This blog usually blogs about wildlife matters. Today I am making an exception.

 I am an unabashed admirer of Tatas. No other business house in India has their social commitment. While I was working as Assistant Wildlife Warden and Wildlife Warden of Eravkulam National Park, I have received unstinted support from Tatas for wildlife conservation. One of the General Mangers of Tata Tea, Mr. M.R.P Lappin had left standing instructions that when the wildlife warden come calling, even if there is an important meeting the wildlife warden should be ushered in.

I was fortunate to realize my dream of flying when I was young.  Flying solo in the small Pushpak aircraft of Trivandrum Flying Club was an exhilarating experience. I had read so much about the pioneering effort of JRD Tata to bring in civil aviation to India, in those days. I had always wondered why Tatas did not enter the civil aviation field when the field was opened up in India, even though they were instrumental in forming Air India in the 1930s, which was later on taken over by the Government. Now the reason has come out straight from the horse’s mouth. Tatas indeed wanted to start an airline in cooperation with Singapore airlines. A minister asked for a bribe of 15 crores which Ratan Tata was not willing to pay. What a shame........    Mr Rattan Tata divulged the information while answering questions after delivering a lecture on 'India in 21st Century: Opportunities and Challenges' in Dehra Dun.  In any other country he would have been a hero and the key for starting the airline handed over to him on a gold platter.


Ranesh said...

You are spot on target Mohanji. Yes,it is corruption that rules the roost in the corridors of power in New Delhi. Manmohanji and Amtony may be exceptions.
Yes, not allowing the Tatas to start an airline is a national shame.

Nithin George said...

I fully agree with the observation of Ranesh

james said...

mohanji, ratan tata's comment is close on the heels of the 2-G scam... that sort of make things rather grey...does'nt it?