BJP MLA Bellad claims credit for Infosys’ Huballi shift; Former CFO criticices move

A war of words has broken out between the Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Arvind Bellad and former Infosys Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Mohandas Pai on the company’s decision to incentivise employees to move to Huballi.

Bellad had accused Infosys of reneging on its commitment to create jobs while acquiring land for its massive campus. Pai, meanwhile, says companies cannot be bullied into moving people without creating necessary social infrastructure. Infosys, though, has refused to comment citing silent periods ahead of results season.

On Monday, Infosys announced that employees willing to relocate to its Development Centre in Hubballi will be incentivised as part of a new transfer policy. According to reports, the IT giant, in an email, told employees, “Hubballi has huge growth potential, and the small city was waiting for the right talent, like you, to build its future. It is your turn to go glocal and consider pursuing your career at Hubballi DC.”

The Development Centre, built in 2022, spans 50 acres and can accommodate 5,000 employees. Employees were promised up to ₹8 lakh in incentives for this relocation.

However, not all were moved by this development. MLA Arvind Bellad, who represents the Hubli-Dharwad West constituency, took to X to say, “My primary responsibility is to fight for the development of my constituency and safeguard the interests of our people. Four months ago, I raised the issue of Infosys not fulfilling its promises to create jobs in Hubballi. It was out of a deep sense of duty to my constituents and the farmers who gave up their land for this project that I took this stand. Today, I feel immense pride as Infosys announces its transfer policy with incentives for employees to move to the Hubballi development centre.”

In the same tweet, he said the initiative would strengthen Infosys’ operations and create direct and indirect employment opportunities, reuniting families and boosting regional development. “This will be a significant win for the people of North Karnataka only if Infosys transfers and recruits people for the Hubballi campus, rather than this just being another PR exercise,” he added.

Former Infosys CFO Mohandas Pai, who had earlier tweeted at Minister of Infrastructure Development of Karnataka, M B Patil to improve the tier-II city’s infrastructure, create a big incubator like T Hub, a seed fund for start-ups, encourage private sector Business Parks, a dedicated team for marketing through Kandem, and an EV park alongside Tata motors, did not take too kindly to Bellad’s statement.

“Sadly, your outburst created negative publicity for Hubbali and scared people away. Very disruptive. If you have issues, you must talk privately. Nobody went there because of any land you have but for other reasons,” Pai tweeted at the MLA. He alleged Bellad had threatened and abused companies that invested hugely and built a great campus in the city. “If senior people do not want to relocate, the city will not grow. You need to do more to develop better infrastructure and market the city there, not threaten people who come there,” remarked the former CFO.

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