‘40% Infoscions’ parents haven’t passed Class X’

An American senator calls it a “chop shop“—a place where stolen cars are dismantled and parts sold separately. Meaning: the Indian company is taking away American jobs. Infosys is naturally distressed at the label, stating it has 1,300 citizens and permanent residents working in the US.

Around the same time, 55 of India’s top 1,000 companies including the Tatas, Mahindra & Mahindra and Godrej, decided to make “caste disclosures” of their workforce in their annual reports from the next financial year, in confirmation with CII’s code of conduct on affirmative action that was finalised in 2007.

Infosys is one of the signatories to the code but its HR director T.V. Mohandas Pai is quoted as saying: “We don’t ask our people their caste. Ours is a white-collar labour force. Ours is an industry where there are more jobs than people and we do not discriminate in whatever we do.”

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Meantime, Infosys CEO Kris Gopalakrishnan takes questions from Indian Express editor-in-chief Shekhar Gupta for NDTV’s Walk the Talk show:

You recently said that nearly 40 per cent of your new recruits come from non-urban areas.

Kris: About 40 per cent also from families where one or both the parents have not completed class 10. So I strongly see this as a transformation that the IT industry is creating in these families. Suddenly, students from rural areas have access to good paying jobs, global jobs. They get to work with some of the best brands and names. It’s clearly a life-changing experience for them and is creating wealth in different parts of the country, and giving them an exposure to the world…

The number of women in your business has also been increasing.

Kris: Thirty-three to thirty-four per cent, and again, a significant change from 10 years ago, when it was 18-19 per cent….

India produces about four-and-a-half lakh engineering graduates and you take half of them.

Kris: Yes, at least half of them and that is a worry because as we grow, that number is only going to increase and it is going to become difficult. So that is a worry and there is a shortage everywhere: shortage of good carpenters, shortage of good plumbers, shortage of good drivers… We require 200,000 people in the industry every year.

Read the full transcript: Walk the talk

Also read: CHURUMURI POLL: Is the H1B game over?

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