Ratan Tata conferred honorary knighthood

Ratan Tata, Chairman Emeritus of the Tata Group, has been conferred with an honorary knighthood in recognition of the Tata Group's heavy investments in Britain and philanthropy.

Ratan Tata, Chairman Emeritus of the Tata GroupRatan Tata is the first Indian since independence to receive the Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE), one of the highest civilian honours of the UK.

British High Commissioner in India Sir James Bevan presented the GBE to Tata on behalf of Queen Elizabeth II, a British High Commission statement said on Monday.

"Mr Tata has been awarded an honorary GBE, one of the highest civilian honours conferred by the UK, in recognition of his services to UK-India relations, inward investment to the UK and philanthropy," the British High Commission said in a statement.

Tata is the only Indian national to be awarded the GBE since India became a republic in 1950, it added.

"Ratan Tata's leadership, vision and integrity will remain the gold standard for generations of aspirational British and Indian business people," Bevan said commenting on the honour.

Tata's contribution to the deep ties that exist between the UK and India has been invaluable, he added.

Queen Elizabeth II had conferred on Tata the honorary award of Knight Commander of the Order of British Empire (KBE) in 2009.

Tata is a member of the UK-India CEO Forum and the British Prime Minister's Business Advisory Group. As chairman of Tata Sons, he oversaw the Tata Group, one of the leading foreign investors and employers in the UK.

Under his leadership the UK benefited from significant inward investment from Tata companies. The Tata Group is now the largest manufacturing employer in the UK.