N Chandrasekaran: IHCL AGM: N Chandrasekaran faces shareholder's ire over observing minute's silence for Pallonji Mistry


Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran on Thursday had to face the ire of a shareholder of the group’s hospitality arm over observing a minute’s silence for late Pallonji Mistry, who was the single largest shareholder in the Tata group holding firm. During the annual general meeting of Company Ltd (IHCL), a shareholder requested for one minute of silence to be observed for Mistry, who died on Tuesday.

“I would like you to take one minute’s silent prayer. That one minute you can debit from my account. Are you agreeable sir?,” the shareholder asked.

To which Chandrasekaran, who is also the chairman of IHCL, replied, “You please make your remarks.”

In response, the shareholder said, “I’m waiting for one minute. After one minute I’ll make my remark.”

After waiting for a few seconds, when Chandrasekaran requested the shareholder to “please continue”, he retorted, “It is just 45 seconds. You are very impatient…I don’t think you are happy announcing that one minute’s silence for Mr Pallonji Mistry, who is a major individual shareholder in Tata Sons and who has been helping the company in the hour of need.”

In reply, Chandrasekaran said, “I respect your comments but can you speak about anything you have on the Indian Hotels?”

Responding to the chairman’s remark, the shareholder said IHCL has been doing very well but added that “when people are not speaking in your favour, you seem to be in a hurry.”

To this, Chandrasekaran replied, “No, no, no. I’m not in a hurry. As long as you speak about the company, it’s fine. I can listen to you. Any other suggestions you give also I will take. I have no hesitation in taking your comments or suggestions.”

Billionaire Pallonji Mistry, chairman of diversified Shapoorji Pallonji (SP) Group, died in the wee hours of Tuesday. Mistry, whose SP Group is the largest shareholder in the Tata Group with 18.37 per cent holding in the over USD 100 billion conglomerate, was 93.

He is survived by four children, including Cyrus Mistry, who succeeded Ratan Tata as chairman of the Tata Group before being ousted by the board in 2016.

The Mistrys have been challenging the removal of Cyrus and in the process of the legal tangles, have also offered to exit their holding in the Tata Group.


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