L&T InfoTech withdraws employment commitment – Over 1000 graduates affected

Over 1000 engineering graduates from various colleges in several cities including Chennai, Mumbai, Bangalore, Indore, Hyderabad have been left in a lurch after L&T Infotech had withdrawn their offer of employment with no prior warning after making them wait for over 18 months. In Tamil Nadu, these included graduates from over 150 engineering colleges including RMK, SRM etc who had been recruited in late 2014 and early 2015. Over 70 candidates came together in a hunger fast organized by Knowledge Professionals Forum on May 30th  Actions including protests and pamphleteering have been carried out in other cities including Hyderabad and Bangalore.

According to KPF representatives, after undergoing five rounds of testing and interview process by L&T InfoTech, over 5800 engineering students from various disciplines had been recruited by L&T. While the communication regarding the employment offer mentions that the offer letter is not a contract, nevertheless, the letter mentions that the candidate has been selected as part of L&T InfoTech Team and that their joining dates would be announced in batches, which leaves no doubt, that it is indeed a commitment towards employment for the candidate.

These candidates were to be employed as trainees with an income of Rs 3,00,000 per annum for a period of one year and would undergo training as per the business requirements of the company. However, after absorbing over 3000-4000 candidates, the company had not extended its employment to the remaining candidates, in spite of providing them, potential joining dates. After repeated communication by the students, L&T announced yet another assessment in March 2016 for the remaining candidates and abruptly withdrew its offer intimating that they had failed the assessment.

This is not the first time that graduates recruited by companies have not been given employment as per the commitment by the company. In 2013, students recruited by HCL were forced to protest when the company refused to employ the graduates it had recruited in colleges. The assertion by IT companies that such offer of employment is not a contract really raises questions on the ethical policies of IT industry especially, as per the campus policies, when students are recruited by one company, then they are not allowed to interview for any other companies, thus barring them from having any choice in employment and that the graduates were made to wait for over a year with no recourse to other opportunities.

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