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Tata Steel Centenary Celebrations
History of Tata Steel
Great Iron Pillar - Tata Steel
The Great Iron Pillar


» History – Tata Steel
» The birth of a pioneer
» In search of steel
» The long journey
» In Search of Success
» Light at the end of the tunnel
» The spirit stays on
» The steel saga
» Going on stream
» On track
» Hard times
» Towards self-sufficiency
» An era of growth
» More than a family
» Making men of steel
» Ahead of times
» Sakchi - a dream come true
» A model town
» The many faces of care
» A social conscience

History – Tata Steel

The origins and ascent of Tata Steel, which has culminated into the century long history of an industrial empire, emerge from the illustrious efforts of India's original iron man and the remarkable people who thereafter, have kept the fire burning.

The story of Tata Steel is a century old. And so is the story of steel in India. Etched with the visions and hardships of a single man, the story has flowed through ages to redefine steel in every way. The saga, which started in 1907, completes a century of trust in 2007. Over the years this one company has exposed the various shapes and forms in which steel can be applied for effective utilization. The story of Tata Steel: defines and redefines conventional wisdom in myriad ways. 

The great Iron Pillar, a thousand years older than the Qutab Minar stands as a living testimony to the unmatched skills of ancient Indian metallurgists. They had so perfected the craft of forging that Indian steel was highly sought after. In Marco Polo’s travels there is a reference to andanique, a corruption of the Persian hundawaniy, i.e. Indian steel. Tavernier, the 17th century French traveller, mentions the existence of a steel industry in the “Kingdom of Golconda”. And the Arab Edrisi declared, “The Hindus excel in the manufacture of iron”. For centuries, therefore, steel of remarkably superior quality was being fashioned in India out of primitive furnaces, to be used, for instance, in the preparation of medicine and in the manufacture of arms. It was only in the last century with the advent of the Industrial Revolution that the time- honoured skills of Indian ironsmiths began to die.

The Industrial Revolution in England ushered in an era of unparalleled peace and prosperity. Modern science bore fruit in an unprecedented technological development and industrial progress. This left countries like India, where industrialisation was still in its infancy, feeling slightly dazzled and overwhelmed. The leading Indian intellectuals of the 19th century believed that if India were to keep pace with the world it would have to master the modern scientific methods of the West. In these times was born Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata. Within his lifetime, Jamsetji was to witness the birth of a revolutionary Indian nationalism that would assist in the emergence of independent India, which he helped to create and whose presence could already be felt when he died in 1904.

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