Infosys panel may summon CEO, CFO & finance team over whistleblower charges

As part of the investigation process into the whistle-blower’s allegations, Infosys’ audit committee is likely to ask company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Salil Parekh and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Nilanjan Roy to depose before it. According to sources, the whistle-blower allegations against both the executives were learnt to be discussed during the board meeting held on October 11 though they had denied any wrongdoing. 

Sources in the know said even company’s former CFO M D Ranganath and deputy CFO Jayesh Sanghrajka could be approached to assist in probe. While Ranganath left Infosys in August 2018 after a stint of 18 years, Sanghrajka resigned from the company last week though he is serving the notice period. Ranganath could not be reached for comments.   

“Parekh and Roy could be questioned on the allegations that they were encouraging wrong accounting practices to inflate profit,” said one of the sources above. 

According to the sources, the ambit of the investigation could also expand to the whole finance team, which prepared the final accounts. When reached out, Infosys said in a statement the company didn’t have any updates to share at this stage. 

After the whistle-blower letter was made public, Infosys on Tuesday had roped in internal auditor EY and law firm Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co to conduct an independent investigation into the matter. Sources said EY would look into the claims of deviation from accounting practices under IFRS regime while Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co would evaluate whether disclosures norms were complied with or not. 

On Wednesday, the Bengaluru-headquartered firm said market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) and the BSE have sought clarification from it for not disclosing information regarding the whistle-blower complaint.

Apart from the probe into the allegations, Infosys is also learnt to be investigating into the issue of voice recordings and emails that were claimed to be in the possession of the whistle-blowers. “Though the emails and recordings as evidence have not been shared with the company as yet, Infosys is trying to find out the circumstances under which these price sensitive information had been taken out without any authorisation,” another person said. 

Though employees working as whistle-blowers are protected under regulations, it has to be seen whether there is any breach of confidentiality provisions, the person added. 

Meanwhile, the share price of the company recovered by 1.16 per cent to end at ~650.75 on Wednesday after a free fall of 16 per cent a day before. 

Under the scanner

  • Probe to look into allegations of wrong accounting practices 
  • Finance team that prepare final accounts could be questioned
  • Former finance executives likely to be approached to assist in the probe
  • Company likely to investigate any internal data breach 

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