Will The Industry Give Phaneesh Murthy Another Chance?
After a brief hiatus following the controversy that hit him in May this year, Phaneesh Murthy seems to be back in action. Murthy, who was sacked by iGate for not disclosing a relationship with a subordinate, has filed a defamation and breach of contract case against his former employer.
Murthy has stated in his lawsuit filed in a California court that the company was aware of his “consensual relationship” with the investor relations head Araceli Roiz and wrongfully fired him on grounds that he had failed to report his relationship.
According to an ET report, Murthy says iGate has also wrongfully withheld $1.6 million (Rs 10 crore) termination benefits and medical benefits of $6,000 (Rs 3.65 lakh) a month. He has, however, hinted possibilities of an out-of-court settlement if iGate comes up with a credible proposal.
The report states that Murthy is now trying to revive his strategic advisory firm “Primentor Inc” that was set up about a decade ago. The firm was founded in partnership with his wife Jaya Murthy in 2003 after Phaneesh Murthy had to leave Infosys following a case of sexual harassment. The case had abruptly ended Murthy’s flourishing career at Infosys at that time.
Soon after Murthy had made a strong comeback and proved his strong business acumen and leadership again at iGate. Within a few years, iGate saw a whopping rise making its way into the billion dollar club of top Indian IT companies. But Murthy’s meteoric rise was hit yet again at that point, by another sexual controversy.
For a man who was seen as an extremely driven, ambitious and capable individual, two such incidents in a row would be hard to explain. His efforts at reviving his old consultancy firm might draw a few clients from the IT industry, where he has spent his entire career. But will he be able to recreate a similar success story yet again? Will the industry give him another chance?
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