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Talk on Tata and Infosys-Boardroom Battles (Lessons To Be Learnt)

“Unceremonious removal  of CEO   damages the image of Corporate India” … Dr CA T S Rawal

Where the world recognise the valuable contributions of Indian nationals like Indira Nooyi of Pepsi, Sundar Pichai of Google, Satya Nadella of Microsoft, Shantanu Narayen (Adobe), Francisco D’Souza (Cognizant), Sanjay Mehrotra (SanDisk), Rajeev Suri (Nokia), at international level, the Tata & Infosys unceremonious removal damages the image of Corporate India and will  discourage the top professionals to join the India corporate, said Dr Rawal an eminent CA and Economist at VIA on his talk on ” Tata and Infosys – Board Room Battle” organised by VIA Taxation and Corporate Law Forum.

He said that both Mr. Cyrus Mistry and Mr. Vishal Sikka  were hand picked by the founders after the strong due  diligence and were given free hand to manage the affairs. However this Board Room Battle in Tata-Infosys may be the result of miscommunication and ineffective relationship with the Founders.

He further  said this  battle damaged the image of the most respected business house, not for any mis-deeds or lack of Governance,  but  failed to keep the founders  into confidence.  “Simplicity and Hard Work” may be the core value of Infosys Founders, whereas “Trust and Commitment” are the premises where Tata group operates. For  groups which put these value above profits, might be finding new CEO working not in alignment with value and hence lead to their  acrimonious removal. This episode highlight  the lack of seriousness  in  succession planning or unwillingness to hand over the baton to outsider of Indian corporates, he said. Founders assuming control anytime they feel uncomfortable with operations undermines decisive leadership and puts the stability of the company vulnerable to uncertainty. A deluge of leaked ‘secrets’, the release of private conversations and washing of dirty linen in public domain by   two corporate entities which were illustrative examples of standards of corporate governance, expose to the management weakness and  loss of reputation. This further lead to eroding of  the substantial, value  of  the shareholders. CA Rawal amongst other things insisted on the learning the art of Let Go, defining the role of respective persons, other board members shielding the correct person and keeping the disputes within the four walls of board room.

Earlier, Prafull Doshi, Immd Past President – VIA welcomed the Guest Speaker with floral bouquet. Omprakash Bagdia, Vice President – VIA gave his welcome address and said this forum has always been taking the  burning issues like Panama Papers, demonetization, Greece Crisis, etc. CS Amit Rajkotiya, Program Coordinator conducted the proceedings and also introduced the speaker. CA Naresh Jakhotia, Jt Secretary – VIA proposed a formal vote of thanks. Prominently present were Ashit Sinha, former Vice President of VIA, Hemant Lodha, Chairman – HRD Forum. Program was largely attended by members from VIA, CA, CS, CMA, MBA and other professionals and industrialist.

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