Sat Pal Khattar


Sat Pal Khattar (b. 22 November 1942, Bhera, India–) is a prominent lawyer, businessman and Indian community leader. He founded Khattar Wong & Partners, one of the largest law firms in Singapore, and is the chairman of Khattar Holdings, a private investment firm. Among the many portfolios that he holds, Khattar is a life trustee of the Singapore Indian Development Association (SINDA), co-chairman of the Singapore-India Partnership Foundation and a board member of Haw Par Corporation. Khattar has been honoured at the May Day Awards on a number of occasions, and was conferred the Public Administration Medal (Silver) at the National Day Awards in 1972.1

Early life
Sal Pal Khattar was born in Bhera, India, in 1942 to a Punjabi sporting-goods salesman and his wife. He grew up under difficult circumstances when his family was separated during the partition of India in 1947. The family later reunited and moved to Singapore in the 1950s.2


When Khattar was a teen, he often helped his father with his sporting goods business at Collyer Quay. He continued to do so even when he was in university.3 He completed his studies at Raffles Institution, and sat for his ‘A’ Levels as a private candidate. He went on to read law at the University of Singapore, graduating with an honours degree in 1966, and then attained a master’s in 1970.4

Career
After graduating in 1966, Khattar entered the civil service as a deputy public prosecutor and state counsel in the Attorney-General’s Chamber. Later that year, he joined the Inland Revenue Department as a legal officer and rose to become a senior legal officer in 1971 – one of the youngest then to attain the Superscale Grade F within the civil service. For his contributions to the civil service, he was awarded the Public Administrative Medal (Silver) at the National Day Awards in 1972.5

Khattar left the civil service in 1974 and set up his own law firm Sat Pal Khattar Co., which was later renamed Khattar Wong & Partners and is one of the largest law firms in Singapore today.6

Although Khattar retired from the law firm in 2000, he remains as chairman of his private investment firm, Khattar Holdings.7 In addition to that, Khattar also has chairmanship or directorship of a number of organisations. He was formerly chairman of GuocoLand Ltd8 and director of Gateway Distriparks Ltd, India.9

Since the early 1990s, Khattar has been investing in India, and this experience has helped him promote and support bilateral trade and investments between Singapore and India. He is the former chairman of Network India10 and remains co-chairman of the Singapore-India Partnership Foundation. In addition, Khattar is also the director of Haw Par Corporation.11 He was also chairman of the Raffles Institution Board of Governors,12 director of the Singapore Labour Foundation, chairman of the Professional Indemnity Insurance Sub-Committee of the Law Society, chairman of the Hindu Advisory Board, member of the Public Service Commission,13 member of the Securities Industry Council,14 chairman of the Singapore Business Federation,15 member of the Presidential Council for Minority Rights16 and board member of the Institute of South Asian Studies.17

He is presently a life trustee of SINDA,18 vice-president of the Singapore Indian Education Trust,19 chairman of the International Management Action Award Awards Council20 and director of the Lee Kuan Yew Exchange Fellowship.21

Awards
In recognition of his contributions to the labour movement, Khattar has been honoured on a number of occasions at the May Day Awards, receiving the NTUC Friend of Labour Award (1979), Meritorious Service Award (1987), Distinguished Service Award (1994)22 and the Distinguished Service (Star) Award (2001).23 In 2002, he was conferred the Overseas Indian Award by the Priyadarshni Academy.24 The Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SICCI) awarded Khattar the SICCI-DBS Singapore-India Business Award in 2009 his efforts in fostering Singapore-India business and investment.25 Khattar also received the Padma Shri (Lotus Award) in 2011 during the Annual Republic Day awards in India. It is the fourth-highest civilian honour bestowed by the Indian government.26

Family27
Wife: Reeta
Daughter: Shareen
Sons: Navin and Arvind



Author

Isabel Ong



References
1. Low, K. T. (Ed.). (2006). Who’s who in Singapore 2006. Singapore: Who’s Who Publications, p. 210. (Call no.: RSING 920.05957 WHO); Lawyer Khattar appointed a member of PSC.  (1989, September 29). The Straits Times, p. 25; Lawyer wins high honours for 20 years service (1994, May 1). The Straits Times, p. 23. Retrieved from NewspaperSG; Madan, M. (2004). Singapore Indian entrepreneurs: Dreams to reality. Singapore: Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry, pp. 132–135. (Call no.: RSING 338.0409225957 MAD)
2. Who’s afraid of the India market? (2004, February 15). The Straits Times, p. 27. Retrieved from NewspaperSG; People at the peak: The who's who of Singapore. (2003). Singapore: Magazines Incorporated, p. 319. (Call no.: RSING 920.05957 PEO)
3. Who’s afraid of the India market? (2004, February 15). The Straits Times, p. 27. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
4. Lawyer Khattar appointed a member of PSC. (1989, September 29). The Straits Times, p. 25. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
5. Lawyer Khattar appointed a member of PSC. (1989, September 29). The Straits Times, p. 25. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
6. Madan, M. (2004). Singapore Indian entrepreneurs: Dreams to reality. Singapore: Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry, pp. 132–135. (Call no.: RSING 338.0409225957 MAD)
7. Aggarwal, N. (1996, October 2). S’pore group sinks $28m into Indian complex and township. The Straits Times, p. 39. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
8. Chua, T. (2012, 17 September). Sat Pal Khattar steps down as GuocoLand's chairman. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from the Singapore Business Review website: http://sbr.com.sg/building-engineering/people/sat-pal-khattar-steps-down-guocolands-chairman; GuocoLeisure Limited. (2012). Annual report 2012, p. 6. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from GuocoLeisure Limited website: http://www.gl-grp.com/?wpdmdl=648
9. Gateway Distriparks Ltd. (2015). Annual report 2014–15, pp. 8–10. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from Gateway Distriparks website: http://www.gateway-distriparks.com/pdfs/GDL%20AR%202015.pdf ; Moneycontrol.com (2015, October 15). Gateway Distriparks’ director Sat Pal Khattar resigns. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from Moneycontrol website: http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/announcements/gateway-distriparks-director-sat-pal-khattar-resigns_3610281.html
10. Who’s afraid of the India market? (2004, February 15). The Straits Times, p. 27. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
11. Haw Par Corporation Limited. (n.d.). About us: Board. Retrieved February 5, 2016, from Haw Par Corp. website: http://www.hawpar.com/about-us/board.html#sat-pal-khattar
12. David, S. (1998, October 29). Old boy returns to head RI. The Straits Times, p. 31. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
13. Lawyer Khattar appointed a member of PSC . (1989, September 29). The Straits Times, p. 25. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
14. Securities Industry Council has more teeth. (1986, March 19). The Business Times, p. 1. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
15. Ministry of Trade and Industry. (2012, April 30). Appointment to the Singapore Business Federation board of trustees [Press release]. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from Ministry of Trade and Industry website: https://www.mti.gov.sg/NewsRoom/Pages/Appointment-to-the-Singapore-Business-Federation-Board-of-Trustees.aspx
16. President’s Office. (2012, April 16). Appointments to Presidential Council for Minority Rights [Press release]. Retrieved March 28, 2016, from The Istana website: http://www.istana.gov.sg/news/press-releases/2012/appointments-presidential-council-minority-rights
17. Institute of South Asian Studies National University of Singapore. (2015). Annual report 2014/2015. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore website: http://www.isas.nus.edu.sg/ISAS%20Reports/ISAS%20AR14-15_LowRes.pdf
18. Singapore Indian Development Association. (2015). Board of trustees. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from SINDA website: http://www.sinda.org.sg/about/board-of-trustees/
19. Singapore Indian Education Trust. (2009). Management council members. In Annual report 2009, p. 12. Retrieved March 28, 2016, from Singapore Indian Education Trust website: http://www.siet-trust.org.sg/docs/annualreports/2009.pdf
20. International Management Action Award. (n.d.). 8th IMAA. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from International Management Action Award website: http://www.imaa.org.sg/en/frontpage/8th-imaa
21. Institute of South Asian Studies & Confederation of Indian Industry. Singapore Symposium 2015, p. 11. Retrieved March 16, 2016, from ISAS website: http://www.isas.nus.edu.sg/Documents/Events/03%20-%20Singapore%20Symposium%20-%20Program%20Booklet%20A4%20FINAL.pdf;

Bloomberg. (2016). Sat Pal Khattar: Executive profile & biography – Businessweek. Retrieved March 22, 2016, from Bloomberg website: http://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/people/person.asp?personId=13637691&privcapId=87434
22. Lawyer wins high honours for 20 years service . (1994, May 1). The Straits Times, p. 23. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
23. Low, K. T. (Ed.) (2006). Who’s who in Singapore 2006. Singapore: Who’s Who Publications, p. 210. (Call no.: RSING 920.05957 WHO)
24. Priyadarshni Academy. (2006). 18th anniversary global awards: Photo gallery. Retrieved April 16, 2009, from Priyadarshni Academy website: http://www.priyadarshniacademy.com/18-ann-global-awards/photo-gallery/18-global-awards1.html
25. Yap, E. (2009, October 7). Sat Pal Khattar wins SICCI-DBS Singapore-India Business Award. The Business Times, p. 10. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
26.
Velloor, R. (2011, January 28). Lawyer Khattar receives award. The Straits Times, p. 12; Nanda, A. (2011, February 21). Fatherly figure. The Straits Times, p. 4. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
27. Low, K. T. (Ed.). (2006). Who’s who in Singapore 2006. Singapore: Who’s Who Publications, p. 210. (Call no.: RSING 920.05957 WHO); Nanda, A. (2011, February 21). Fatherly figure. The Straits Times, p. 4. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.



The information in this article is valid as at 2016 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

 

Subject
Community leaders
Business, finance and industry>>Business organization>>Business enterprises
Personalities>>Biographies>>Community Leaders
People and communities>>Social groups and communities
Khattar, Sat Pal, 1942-
Businessmen--Singapore--Biography
Lawyers--Singapore--Biography