Jehangir Ratanji Dadabhoy Tata (July 29, 1904-November 29, 1993) was a pioneer aviator and important businessman of India.
J.R.D. Tata was born in Paris, France, the son of Ratanji Dadabhoy Tata and his French wife Sooni nee Suzanne Briere. His father was a first cousin of Jamshetji Tata, a pioneer industrialist in India.
J.R.D. Tata was inspired by aviation pioneer Louis Bleriot. In 1929 Tata got the first pilot licence issued in India. he later came to be known as the father of Indian civil aviation. He founded India’s first commercial airline, Tata Airlines, in 1932, which in 1946 became Air India.
For decades, Tata directed the Tata Group of Companies, with major interests in many industries in India, including steel, engineering and electrical companies. He was famous for succeeding in business while maintaining high ethical standards – refusing to bribe politicians or use the black market.
He was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1992 for his service to commerce and industry in the country. He died in Geneva, Switzerland in 1993 at age of 89. J. R. D. Tata was a Zoroastrian of Parsee (Persian) descent.