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    Wipro shares near 52-week low after IT giant fires 300 employees for moonlighting

    Wipro shares near 52-week low after IT giant fires 300 employees for moonlighting

    Wipro shares near 52-week low after IT giant fires 300 employees for moonlighting
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    By Kanishka Sarkar   IST (Published)

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    Tech behemoth Wipro’s shares were nearing their 52-week low on Thursday, a day after the company laid off nearly 300 employees for moonlighting.

    Tech behemoth Wipro’s shares were nearing their 52-week low on Thursday, a day after the company laid off nearly 300 employees for moonlighting.
    Wipro shares were trading 0.70 percent lower at Rs 398 on BSE at 3 pm. During the day, the stock fell to Rs 394, a percent away from the 52-week low of Rs 391 hit on July 15. In 2022 (year-to-date), the IT stock has erased nearly 45 percent of investors’ wealth as against the benchmark Sensex which has gained 0.28 percent during the period.
    The downtrend follows Wipro chairman Rishad Premji’s statement that the IT major has found 300 employees working directly for its competitors over the last few months.
    At the AIMA's (All India Management Association) National Management Convention on Wednesday, Premji said, “Moonlighting is a complete violation of integrity in its deepest form.”
    He said that the services of such staffers have been terminated in those specific instances of violation.
    In August, in a tweet, Premji termed moonlighting cheating “plain and simple.”
    Last week, Infosys too had warned its employees that they could lose their jobs if they’re found to be “two-timing.”
    The company said it “strictly discourages dual employment”, and defines moonlighting as working a second job during or outside of regular business hours, as per an HR email to employees. It asserted that dual employment is not permitted by its employee handbook and code of conduct.
    Wipro’s move to fire moonlighters comes at a time when IT firms are worried that employees taking up secondary jobs after regular work hours will affect productivity, lead to conflicts of interest and possible data breaches.
    When asked if moonlighting is illegal, Vaibhav Bhardwaj, partner at IndusLaw, told CNBCTV18.com that most employers insist on exclusive employment and incorporate robust non-compete clauses and other restrictive provisions in an employee’s employment contract or applicable policies.
    If the employment contract or company policies prohibit an employee from taking up dual employment, the employer would be well within their rights to take appropriate action, he said.
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