New Delhi: It seems the debate over moonlighting in the IT sector is refusing to die down anytime soon as the industry is divided over the various aspects of this unethical practice. To add fuel to the fire, Minister of State for Skill Development, and Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar on Friday said moonlighting by employees in IT sector is okay if there is no breach of contract.
The statement from the Union Minister comes at a time when most IT companies, including TCS, Wipro and Infosys, are against this practice where an employee works in dual employment.
TCS calls moonlighting an ethical issue
Recently, TCS called moonlighting an “ethical issue” where its employees take up another job while working full-time with the company. However, the Tata Group has not taken any action against the employees who were found working simultaneously with rivals as well.
Wipro sacks 300 employees for moonlighting
On the other hand, Wipro chairman Rishad Premji confirmed last month that it has fired around 300 employees after being found working for other companies after their regular working hours at the Bengaluru-based IT firm.
Infosys sacks employees for moonlighting
In the meantime, Infosys also confirmed firing employees who were found working for rival companies.
Talking about moonlighting issue, Infosys CEO Salil Parekh said, “If the employees are doing blatant work in two specific companies where there’s confidentiality issues, we have let go them in the past 12 months.”
In the wake of these developments, the IT minister in an interview to Business Today TV said moonlighting is a trend and the practice will evolve over the years, and more employees may prefer taking jobs as a consultant.
However, he said if an employee has a contract with an employer and the contract specifically bans him from doing anything unethical or defining what is unethical or what is against the contract, there is no way that individual should violate the contract.
“I want to be very clear on behalf of myself, my Ministry, and the government of India that I will never condone and it’s not a great idea for any employee to start talking about violating a contractual commitment he or she has with the company,” the minister said.