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At a time when the Tata-Mistry battle is exploding, Infosys has been recently in the news more than usual, and for somewhat (brewing) similar reasons.
Infosys founders N.R. Narayana Murthy, Kris Gopalakrishnan and Nandan Nilekani, had written to the Infosys board in January expressing concerns about CEO Vishal Sikka’s compensation and the severance package offered to two former official, ex-CEO Rajiv Bansal and former General Counsel David Kennedy. Other issues include induction of Punit Sinha, wife of Union minister Jayant Sinha, as an independent director on the board.
Sikka’s annual compensation was raised to $11 million for this year, sharply higher than $7.08 million in 2016. While Bansal’s severance package by Infosys amounted to ₹17.38 crore, equalling his 24 month’s pay, Kennedy received a compensation package of $868,250 million.
Some of the observers from the corporate world have taken the view that there is a serious issue in India with founders refusing to part with the board; others, however, feel that any opacity in this regard should be highlighted.
The board has, obviously, denied all allegations and have appointed Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas to formalise this process. The law firm will receive various inputs from promoters and other key stakeholders, evaluate them and make recommendations to the board.