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Business News/ Companies / News/  Fired US employees accuse TCS of giving their jobs to Indian H-1B visa workers; Tata Group's company responds

Fired US employees accuse TCS of giving their jobs to Indian H-1B visa workers; Tata Group's company responds

TCS faces allegations of hiring bias in the US, accused of favoring Indian workers on H-1B visas over American employees based on race and age. Former staff filed complaints with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

TCS faces allegations of hiring biases in the US (REUTERS)Premium
TCS faces allegations of hiring biases in the US (REUTERS)

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has been embroiled in a controversy over hiring biases at its US unit. According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, a group of aggrieved American employees have alleged that the software giant fired them from the company to enroll workers from India on H-1B visas.

The American professionals accused TCS of illegally discriminating against them based on race and age. Some of the work was shifted to lower-paid Indian immigrants on temporary work visas, the disgruntled US employees added.

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Usually, layoffs in companies affect majorly the seniors, but the former TCS staff said that the Indian firm broke the law by targeting them based on their race. They claimed that TCS gave preferential treatment to Indian workers in the US on the coveted H-1B visas.

As per the WSJ report, 22 former TCS staff have filed complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission since December 2023.

The complainant are Caucasians, Asian-Americans, and Hispanic Americans ranging in the age of 40 to 60s. The fired employees have master's of business administration or other advanced degrees, the WSJ report mentioned.

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The former TCS workers said that despite receiving rave reviews from the company, they were abruptly taken off projects last year. Some ex-employees alleged that TCS management opposed their efforts to find new assignments at the company. One of the complaints mentioned that their work was taken over by "less-experienced" Indian nationals on H-1B visas.

A former employee also cited TCS' global human resources head Milind Lakkad's remark that he gave to an Indian media channel. He said that TCS is trying to reduce the number of Americans it employs in the IS and would like to provide opportunities to Indians there.

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Meanwhile, the Indian IT service firm has denied the allegations by the 22 US employees. A TCS spokeswoman told WSJ that the company has a "strong record of being an equal opportunity employer in the US, acting with integrity in its operation".

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TCS, part of the conglomerate Tata Group, has more than 600,000 global staff. It typically employs a smaller workforce in the US, comprising staff who often have face-to-face meetings with clients, the report noted.

H-1B visa is one of the debatable topics in the US politics. It is a nonimmigrant visa that allows US employers to hire skilled foreign workers in America for a specific period. The former US President has called the H-1B visa system a "cheap labour programme" while the Biden administration is actively working to improve the visa system and green card backlog.

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Published: 31 Mar 2024, 10:18 AM IST
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