The Delhi High Court on Thursday turned down a plea seeking conferment of Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian award, on former Tata Sons chairperson and philanthropist Ratan Tata for his service to the nation.
The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) came before a division bench headed by Acting Chief Justice Vipin Sanghi and also comprising Justice Navin Chawla.
However, the bench asked the petitioner’s counsel to withdraw it or else will impose cost, stating it is not for the court to interfere in the matter. The bench told the petitioner to approach the government if he wants. “Is it for us to decide who the Bharat Ratna should be awarded to? You either withdraw or we will impose cost,” the bench said.
Highlighting the philanthropical work of Tata and his company, the petitioner Rakesh, who claimed to be a social activist said in the plea: “Ratan Tata is a great businessman and under his leadership, the business focused on global expansion. After retiring as Chairman of Tata Sons in 2012, Ratan Tata has been active in investing, in a personal capacity, in startups and encouraging young entrepreneurs.”
It also stated that in March 2020, Ratan Tata had pledged Rs 500 crore from Tata Trusts to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
The revenue of Tata Group’s 30 companies in FY20 was $106 billion. “The 30 companies spread across 10 clusters operates in over 100 companies and collectively employ more than 7.5 lakh people,” the petition read.