IT company Tech Mahindra said Tuesday it would conduct a thorough probe after a former employee, just days after the Supreme Court decriminalising homosexuality, alleged harrasment and discrimination by his then team manager in 2015. Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra said the company is investigating the matter and “will ascertain the facts and see that the outcome is fair and just”.
He assured that the group celebrates diversity at workplace and “fairness and dignity” of an individual are enshrined in core value of the company. “Our code of conduct is explicit on this subject … Tech M is investigating these allegations, and appropriate action will follow,” Mahindra tweeted. Tech Mahindra, which faced online criticism after the former employee went public with the charges against his former team leader, said in a separate tweet that it will undertake a “thorough investigation and take steps as necessary”.
Terming the issue as “disturbing”, the company said that it was “completely against the ethos of our group that believes in uniqueness of every individual.” In a recent mail written to his previous manager after the SC’s landmark order, Gaurav Probir Pramanik cited a 2015 incident where the manager concerned, during an address in a training room, had allegedly made “sweeping generalisation and stereotyping of someone’s sexuality”.
Pramanik accused the manager of making “mocking judgements” on how his purported “effeminate” nature had affected his work. He further alleged that the manager made “a mockery out of a religious minority and a sexual minority” despite being a leader at a company that prides itself for inclusion and diversity. CP Gurnani, Managing Director and CEO of Tech Mahindra tweeted: “Gaurav, you have my personal assurance that this will be thoroughly investigated. We remain committed to supporting and promoting a diverse workforce at TechM”.
On September 6, the apex court in a historic ruling had said that consensual gay sex is not a crime, while striking down a British era law that it said violates the right to equality. In his mail, Pramanik said that he had “promised” to write to the manager “the day IPC Section 377 was scrapped and being a homosexual in a country as great as India was legal”.