Ratan Tata: Have no plans to step down from Trusts

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - Live - - FRONT PAGE - HT Cor­re­spon­dent

MUM­BAI: Tata Sons in­terim chair­man Ratan N Tata has no im­me­di­ate plans to step down from the chair­man­ship of Tata Trusts.

A state­ment is­sued by Tata Sons clar­i­fied this on Fri­day, adding that a process was “be­ing put in place for lead­er­ship suc­ces­sion inthetrustsinthe­fu­ture,toen­able an or­dered and smooth tran­si­tion of lead­er­ship”.

Tata Trusts is the prin­ci­pal share­holder of the $103-bil­lion Tata Sons, hold­ing two-thirds of its eq­uity.

The clar­i­fi­ca­tion came in re­sponse to a me­dia re­port quot­ing former di­rec­tor RK Kr­ishna Ku­mar as say­ing that Tata would re­sign from chair­man­ship of the trusts,wash­inghis­hand­sof ac­tive in­volve­ment in the func­tion­ing of the­group­com­pa­niesafter­his­term as its in­terim chair­man ends.

Tata Sons has con­sti­tuted a search panel to ap­point a new chair­man for the con­glom­er­ate by the end of Fe­bru­ary 2017. Tata would be the in­terim chair­man till then.

The is­sue as­sumes­sig­nif­i­cance in the light of ousted group chair­man Cyrus Mistry claim­ing that thechar­i­ta­ble­or­gan­i­sa­tion–on­the strength of its 66% share­hold­ing in Tata Sons – has a cru­cial say in the­op­er­a­tionsof group­com­pa­nies.

How­ever, this con­tention has been strongly de­nied by Tata Sons and se­nior ex­ec­u­tives. There is no ques­tionof such­in­ter­fer­ence,Tata Pow­erdi­rec­torNaw­shirMirza­said, adding: “They (the trusts) are not on the board of op­er­at­ing com­pa­nies. How can they de­cide on in­di­vid­ual com­pany is­sues?”

Ratan Tata:

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