Ex Wipro Employee Who Was Allegedly Called 'Bitch' By Colleagues Wins Case

Shreya Ukil suffered sex discrimination and harassment, including abusive emails and vicious name-calling at Wipro.

Highlights

  • She sued Wipro in 2014 for sexual discrimination, unfair dismissal
  • She alleged she was paid half of her male counterparts in London
  • Evidence against some senior leadership of being sexist: Judgement
London: Shreya Ukil took Indian IT giant Wipro to court in 2014 making stunning allegations of sex discrimination, unfair dismissal and verbal abuse by her colleagues in London.

Last month, the city's employment tribunal ruled in her favour. Its judgement, accessed by NDTV, says there is evidence against "some in the senior leadership in Wipro" of being 'sexist and unfair'.

Wipro, however, said in a statement, "Wipro Limited is pleased the UK Employment Tribunal has upheld the dismissal of the complainant from the services of the organization as appropriate and rejected claims of adverse cultural attitude towards women in the organization."

Ms Ukil, 40, moved the tribunal in September 2014, three months after she was fired as Wipro's Head of Sales, Europe. She had moved to London in 2010 after working in the company's  Bengaluru office for seven years.

In her lawsuit, she alleged that she was paid half of what her male counterparts in London made  - close to 160,000 pounds a year.

She also said she was routinely subjected to sexist remarks by senior colleagues who called her "shrill', 'shallow', 'un-European' and 'bitch' among other names.

"Women who are confident, capable and express their viewpoints are often called emotional, menopausal by some male peers," Ms Ukil told NDTV, describing how she was harassed, cornered and even blocked from moving to other roles in Europe.

The tribunal found evidence of what she described as consistent attempts at victimization, but said there was no proof that she was sexually harassed. It also said her sacking was unfair but not "wrongful".

"This judgement raises serious questions on whether the company is ethical in dealing with women who raise allegations of inequality and sexist behaviour. The atmosphere was predatory, misogynistic and sexist. I raised numerous red flags before the management and internal Ombudsman. When the issue wasn't addressed I resigned. But they rejected my resignation to fire me later when I was on sick leave," Ms Ukil said.

The tribunal will next month decide how much Wipro owes Ms Ukil for what she went through, not just financially but also mentally.

"It is very good news for Shreya Ukil... It is for companies like Wipro to judge how damaging this is and learn lessons on how to deal with internal complaints in a fair manner, " said Kiran Daurka, Ms Ukil's lawyer.
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