INFOSYS Board Backs Vishal Sikka, criticizes Murthy

Infosys Ltd director board today came out strongly in support of ex-CEO Vishal Sikka and issued a strong rebuttal to a letter released by Infosys founder Narayana Murthy.

Earlier in the day, Murthy was scathing in his review of the actions taken by the company and its board in addressing concerns of poor accountability and transparency in the company and corporate governance issues.

In reply, the company issued a very detailed statement and sought to address each and every point brought up by the former chairman.

“We simply got one after another anonymous complaints. We have one after another investigations. And after all the investigations, nothing has come to light,” company chairman said today at a press conference, referring to allegations about the acquisition of Panaya.

In February 2015, Infosys announced acquisition of Panaya for a reported $200 million. Prior to the sale, Panaya was in crisis and was on the verge of shut down, after many waves of layoffs. However, the acquisition created some controversy around corporate governance.

Infosys chairman said people making allegations refused to give credibility to anything and anyone, adding that more than one agency has conducted forensic audits.

“We don’t trust the board. We don’t trust world renowned auditors. There must have been some deal done with them.. that is not an acceptable situation,” Chairman R Seshasayee said, characterizing the accusations.

“There is so much we can do to convince people and we have done that. Having done that, we will think, let’s do what is right for the company… We are done with this, we have closed the investigation,” he added.

In a detailed and written rebuttal, Infosys said the letter by Murthy seemed to “attack the integrity of the Board and Management of the Company alleging falling corporate governance standards in the Company.

“The Board takes great umbrage to the contents of the letter and places on record the following:

Mr. Murthy’s continuous assault, including this latest letter, is the primary reason that the CEO, Dr. Vishal Sikka, has resigned despite strong Board support.

Mr. Murthy’s letter contains factual inaccuracies, already-disproved rumours, and statements extracted out of context from his conversations with Board members.

The Board assures its shareholders, employees, customers and communities that it is committed not to be distracted by this misguided campaign by Mr. Murthy and will continue to adhere to the highest international standards of corporate governance as it executes its strategy of profitable growth for the benefit of all Infosys stakeholders.

Murthy’s campaign against the Board and the Company has had the unfortunate effect to undermine the Company’s efforts to transform itself.

The Board has been engaged in a dialogue with the Founder to resolve his concerns over the course of a year, trying earnestly to find feasible solutions within the boundaries of law and without compromising its independence. These dialogues have unfortunately not been successful.

The Board declines to speculate about Mr. Murthy’s motive for carrying out this campaign, including the latest letter. The Board believes it must set the record straight on the false and misleading charges made by Mr. Murthy because his actions and demands are damaging the Company and misrepresent its commitment to good corporate governance.”

Read the full reply here: