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It was Murthy's day at Infy AGM

Last updated on: June 13, 2011 16:33 IST

It was Murthy's day at Infy AGM

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BS Reporter BS Reporter in Bengaluru


It was certainly the day of N R Narayana Murthy at the 30th annual general meeting of Infosys Technologies, the company he co-founded with six others in 1981.

As the chief mentor and chairman finished his presentation to the shareholders on Saturday, words of praises showered on the person who steered the company for the last 30 years and brought rich dividends to the shareholders.

When chief financial officer V Balakrishnan started a presentation to depict the company's financial strength, as a tribute to the outgoing chairman, he used Murthy's morphed images with popular Bollywood numbers playing in the background.

However, the proceedings at the AGM were not without some serious discussions, with investors raising concern over the company's losing value in the share-market and the negative publicity it got recently.

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As Murthy finished the chairman's speech -- sharing his experience in the last 30 years -- one of the woman shareholders from Mumbai, who had travelled to Bengaluru to be a part of the AGM, stood up gently.

"Taarif karu kya uski, jisne aapko (tumhe) banaya," she started with the popular Bollywood number, attributing this to Murthy's parents who brought him to this world.

The AGM virtually was a farewell party, as most shareholders who were supposed to place their grievances before the company's management were talking about Murthy's contribution in building the 'empire'.

At one point, the shareholders even paid a standing ovation to Murthy, who was presiding in the AGM for the last time.

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Image: Infosys co-founder N R Narayana Murthy.
Photographs: Rediff Archive
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As Murthy is set to retire in August this year and is in the process of passing the baton to K V Kamath and his trusted lieutenant Kris Gopalakrishnan, he was seen talking to both on the dais most of his time.

However, Murthy, who is known for his straight-taking, not once showed his softer side during the 30-minute address to the shareholders.

Comparing his parting with Infosys with the marriage of a daughter, he said, "The Infosys journey has been an integral part of my life. My colleagues say Infosys is an inseparable part of me and I am an inseparable part of Infosys The best analogy that I can draw is the separation of a daughter after marriage, when she leaves her parents' home. Yes, the parents will be there when she needs them. And, they will be happy that she is starting a new life in an exciting environment," said Murthy.

He said the company had got a new set of leaders, including Kris Gopalakrishnan and S D Shibulal.

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Photographs: Reuters
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He appealed to the shareholders to show the same kind of support to the company's new leadership that they had been showing to him in the past.

While most of the senior leadership was present, two persons who were conspicuous of their absence were Ashok Vemuri, head of banking, finance and insurance business, and Subhash Dhar who is heading the recently formed 'innovations practices'.

While Vemuri is understood to be in New York in connection with the company's work, Dhar has resigned from the company after he was denied board membership.

4 new board members added to Infosys

IT major Infosys Technologies announced the expansion of the board by inducting four new members.

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Photographs: Reuters
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The Bengaluru-based company's nomination committee has decided to induct V Balakrishnan, B G Srinivas and Ashok Vemuri as executive directors with immediate effect.

The board has also inducted Ann Fudge, who is presently the non-executive director at Unilever and GE, as an additional director. She will be the only woman member.

There was no woman in the board since Rama Bijapurkar resigned in April last year. Balakrishnan is the chief financial officer, while B G Srinivas is the senior vice-president and head of manufacturing. Vemuri is the senior vice-president and head of banking and capital markets.

"The company is in the stage of transformation. The new members are extremely talented and competent," said chairman N R Narayana Murthy. Meanwhile, the company confirmed the resignation of senior vice-president and head of Innovation, Subhash Dhar.


Photographs: Reuters
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