Cognizant faces legal action from IT Union over layoffs

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Cognizant faces legal action from IT Union, KITU over layoffs of bench employees

Karnataka State IT/ITeS Employees Union, KITU (the first registered IT union in Karnataka) said it had opened a Help Desk to support the affected employees of Cognizant and initiated the legal action after receiving complaints from dozens of technology workers who had lost their jobs or were faced with the prospect of layoffs at Cognizant.

Cognizant employees, especially benched who had been put in a “forced resignation” mode at facilities in Bengaluru, Chennai and other cities had reached out to KITU with multiple employment woes, the IT workers’ body said on Thursday.

KITU spokesperson also said that they have started a drive calling all Cognizant employees to not tender their resignations under management pressure.

“Several victimised employees approached us, the mass retrenchments are happening in violation of the labour laws. We will register a complaint with the State Labour department,” said KITU Secretary Sooraj Nidiyanga.

Companies that employ more than 100 people need prior approval from the Labour Department to execute layoffs as per labour rules, KITU, Nidiyanga said.

“Rebranding a layoff by arguing that employees voluntarily resigned when they were, in fact, forced to resign, is also against the law. We urge all affected employees to refuse to resign if asked to do so,” he added.

A cognizant spokesperson said, “Performance management is a normal process across the IT industry, including Cognizant… we would like to clarify that recent third-party allegations regarding a specific number of job actions are not accurate, not based on facts, and were not announced by Cognizant.”

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