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RatanTata_CyrusMistry Sexual harassment
11 Nov 2016

Tata-Mistry spat gets murkier with sexual harassment case

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The Ratan Tata-Cyrus Mistry spat just got murkier as details of a sexual harassment-related case, which was doing the rounds in the social media, were just made public through various media reports today.

A report said the handling of a sexual harassment complaint against Indian Hotels Company chief Rakesh Sarna may have been one of of the factors that led to the abrupt removal of Mistry as chairman of Tata Sons on 24 October.

The issue reached Ratan Tata by June 2016, who discussed the issue with Mistry. In July 2016, an investigation committee was formed. The panel is yet to submit a report, the report says.On 9 November 2015, then group human resource head NS Rajan had requested the woman staffer to meet chief ethics officer Mukund Rajan and group general counsel Bharat Vasani.

According to a report, the woman executive had quit the Tata group saying she would like to “move into an organisation which values and respects women’s rights”.

“During my seven months employment at Taj, I was subjected to repeated unwanted sexual advances from Mr Sarna. When I ignored or tried to rebuff them the environment turned hostile,” the ET report quotes citing the letter written by the complainant to the Tatas.

Cyrus Mistry’s office denied any lapse in dealing with the complaint. It accepted that the woman approached Mistry and informed him that she had experienced unwelcome behaviour by a “senior Indian Hotels Company employee”.

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