Mumbai: Tata Sons on Saturday denied that group chairman Ratan Tata has used words such as "venal" business environment or accused the government of "inaction" in media interviews.
"Tata Sons clarifies that in Ratan Tata's interview with (a leading British financial) daily, he spoke about coherence in implementation of government policy rather than "lashes into the PM", "rapping India", "warning government of inaction" or "venal business environment", as has been reported in the daily and other media," said a statement from Tata Sons.
"These are terms used by the publications and not by Mr. Tata in any manner," it said.
"Tata Sons is surprised that reputed media entities have sensationalised the observations, without taking into cognisance the tone, tenor and context of the interview," the statement said.
In interviews published ahead of his retirement as chairman this month, Ratan Tata criticised what he called a lack of coherence in government policy and said the Mumbai- based group's ethical standards had cost it business.
Tata, a sprawling conglomerate whose portfolio ranges from salt to software, has earned itself a global reputation for its eye-catching purchases of Western companies such as Jaguar Land Rover and Corus Steel.
Earlier, Tata had told the 'Financial Times' that his Group planned to look to other emerging markets for expansion and accused Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of forcing it to look abroad by failing to address complaints about bureaucracy.
Manmohan Singh government is currently steering a series of economic reforms through Parliament which aim to open up sectors such as supermarkets, insurance and aviation. But Tata, whose global sales is about USD 100.9 billion, said investors were being deterred from India and complained that it still took the best part of a decade to gain clearance for major projects.
"Different agencies in the government have almost contradictory interpretations of the law, or interpretations of what should be done," he told the London-based newspaper.
"These are things which by and large would drive investors away in most other countries," he added.
Tata contrasted the Indian government's attitude towards its industrial sector with that of its counterpart China where Tata recently opened a Jaguar Land Rover factory. "There's a great, marked difference (in) government support," he said. "If we had the same kind of encouragement to industry, I think India could compete definitely with China."
Tata was the driving force behind the creation of the 'Nano', billed as the world's cheapest car when it launched in 2008.