CHURUMURI POLL: Was Phaneesh Infy’s real star?

Once the ink over the “integration” of the IT company iGate with another IT company Patni dries down, the $1.2 billion deal brings up a nice, bitchy question: has Phaneesh Murthy sent a nice, subliminal message to his old Infosys friends (and foes) by picking up the company where N.R. Narayana Murthy cut his IT teeth?

In interviews with the pink papers, P. Murthy strikes just the kind of I-am-above-that-kind-of-cheap-stuff note that bosses do at occasions such as these, with a cigar in their mouth. In one powwow, he says that the iGate-Patni deal is “not about egos but global ambitions“. In another, he says he is not “settling any personal scores“.

Be that as it may, iGate’s purchase of Patni, a company two-and-a-half times its size, has irony written all over it. For, P. Murthy had to unceremoniously exit The Other Murthy’s company, which he helped grow from $2 million in 1992 to $700 million in 2002 as its global sales head, following sexual harassment charges.

Although the sexual harassment charges, levelled first by his former executive assistant Reka Maximovitch and later by another former Infosys employee, are not to be sniffed at, there were plenty of rumours in Silicon Halli back then, especially given the buzz was P. Murthy was actually N.R.N. Murthy’s chosen one.

In other words….

In managing to dust off the allegations, in starting successful consulting and tech companies, in unsuccessfully bidding for Satyam, and now picking up Patni in just eight short years, has P. Murthy finally shown what he is made of? That you can’t keep a good man down, at least not for too long?

That he, Phaneesh Murthy, was the real star, the brains, behind Infosys’ rise as an IT giant, before his flight was suddenly grounded?