In a sharp letter, Cyrus Mistry, the ousted chairman of Tata Group, has blamed the directors of the conglomerate of not giving him a chance to defend himself and wrongly dismissing him. Mistry has also warned that the group may face $18 billion in write downs. Mistry has blamed five unprofitable businesses that he inherited, for the possible write downs. “I was shocked beyond words at the happenings at the board meeting of October 24, 2016. Apart from the invalidity and illegality of the business that was conducted, I have to say that the Board of Directors has not covered itself with glory. To “replace” your Chairman without so much as a word of explanation and without affording him an opportunity of defending himself in a summary manner must be unique in the annals of corporate history. The suddenness of the action, and the lack of explanation has led to all manner of speculation and has done my reputation and the reputation of the Tata Group immeasurable harm,” Mistry writes.
Mistry has said that as the group chairman, he tried to turn things around – be it from a Nano to an ultra-mega-power plant. Mistry has hit out at Ratan Tata, his predecessor, for interference. In an e-mail letter Mistry has lamented that Ratan Tata’s interference had increased to the extent that he (Mistry) was reduced to being a ‘lame-duck’ chairman.
Full text of Cyrus Mistry’s letter to Tata board by Swarajya on Scribd
In the letter above, that has been accessed Swarajya, Mistry has also blamed Ratan Tata for the ongoing problems in Indian Hotels, the company that runs the Taj chain of hotels. According to Mistry, he had recommended scrapping the Nano project, stating that emotional reasons cannot be be the sole reason for keeping a product alive.
In one of the biggest upheavals in the corporate sector, the Tata Sons Board on Monday appointed Ratan Tata as the interim chairman of the group, replacing Cyrus Mistry. The Board has constituted a Selection Committee to choose a new Chairman. The Committee comprises Ratan N. Tata, Venu Srinivasan, Amit Chandra, Ronen Sen and Lord Kumar Bhattacharyya, as per the criteria in the Articles of Association of Tata Sons. The committee has been mandated to complete the selection process in four months.