Cyrus Mistry, who was abruptly removed as Chairman of the Tata Group on Monday, has emailed board members to say he is “shocked” by how he was ousted and that the “board has not covered itself with glory” and he was not given “a chance to defend myself.”
Mistry, 48, has been replaced by his predecessor, Ratan Tata, who is back as top boss of India’s largest conglomerate for four months.
As a pre-emptive move against a legal challenge from Mr Mistry, the Tatas have filed caveats or taken action in a series of courts.
Mistry has described his removal as “unprecedented” in India. His office has said that he is not considering a legal move “at this stage”.
The board of the $100 billion group has nine members. Six voted to remove Mr Mistry; two abstained; Mr Mistry, per rules, did not get a vote.
Harish Salve, long-time legal advisor to Mr Tata, whose family founded the group, told NDTV that Mr Mistry’s decisions to sell assets acquired by the group’s patriarch – including its steel interests in the UK – had not gone down well with the board and were seen as damaging the company’s formidable reputation internationally.
Yesterday, Mohan Parasaran, who provided legal advice to the board for a month over Mr Mistry’s removal, said that before the landmark board meeting, Mr Tata met privately with Mr Mistry and advised him to quit, but was turned down.