When he took over as chairman of the Tata Group in 1991, the majority perception was the untested nephew of JRD Tata would be a pushover.
His detractors banked banked on two things: Not only was Ratan Tata shy and reticent, his career had been undistinguished, with desultory stints in sundry group firms.
Twenty one years later, as he prepares to hand over the baton to Cyrus Mistry, all that is a distant memory.
The detractors faded into oblivion in no time, leaving the reluctant king, who once wanted to go back to the US to pursue his first love, architecture, free to drag India's largest conglomerate out of the cosy embrace of its pedigreed but plodding existence.
Text: Business Standard