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Former employee sues Wipro for sexual harassment, discrimination

A former Wipro employee has sued the IT major for up to 1 million pound, accusing a former senior executive of sexual harassment and the company of unfair dismissal. However, the firm has dismissed the allegations as "insidious and defamatory."

The documents, which have been submitted at the Central London Employment Tribunal, where the case is being heard, says that the employee claims to have been forced to submit to "aggressive sexual advances" by Manoj Punja, 54, the global head of sales for the company and her boss at the time.

In 2010, the employee, who has a degree from the University of Leeds, was transferred from the Bengaluru offices of Wipro to London as a sales and market development director.

The woman alleges that she was forced by Punja to begin a romantic relationship with him. While she initially held out against his advances, she was ultimately compelled to give in after threats from him.

She also asserted that Punja manipulated her, and told her to keep the relationship a secret. They were in contact over a personal iPhone that Punja had acquired for the purpose.

The employee, who is suing the company for sexual harassment, victimization, sexual gender and race discrimination and wrongful dismissal, said that the pressure of the illicit affair forced her into binge drinking and depression, which eventually required hospitalization. In September 2014, she resigned from her job, and claims that her resignation was not accepted. She was fired a week later.