Ashneer Grover quits as BharatPe MD, board planned action against him

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Founder of fintech firm BharatPe Ashneer Grover quit as its managing director on Tuesday (March 1) soon after he received the agenda for an upcoming board meeting which was planning action against him over a report by advisory firm PwC regarding his conduct.

“Ashneer Grover resigned as Managing Director and from the Board Director of BharatPe minutes after receiving the agenda for an upcoming Board meeting that included submission of the PWC report regarding his conduct and considering actions based on it. The Board reserves the right to take action based on the reports findings,” Bharatpe said in a statement.

There have been allegations of financial irregularities against Grover and his wife Madhuri Jain Grover, who was sacked a few days back as the company’s head of controls.

Madhuri is alleged to have used the company funds for personal beauty treatments, buying electronic items and family trips to the US and Dubai.

The board had in January launched an independent audit of its internal process and systems, which Grover later said was riddled with prejudice.

The review had found several inconsistencies in dealings with vendors.

Also read: BharatPe owner sends legal notice to Kotak Mahindra Bank over Nykaa IPO

Grover in his resignation said he is being forced out of the company and that he and his family have been embroiled in baseless and targeted attacks by a few individuals, who are ready to not only harm his reputation, but also the reputation of the company.

Grover — who last month went on a two-month leave of absence following allegations of using abusive language against Kotak Mahindra Bank staff and fraudulent practices — had filed an arbitration plea with the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), claiming the company’s investigation against him was illegal.

Recently, Grover lost an arbitration that he had filed over the company’s investigation against him, arguing that there was no ground to stop governance review at the fintech firm.

The emergency arbitrator (EA) has, however, rejected all the five grounds of his appeal and denied relief.

Grover had pleaded before the arbitrator that the preliminary investigation was invalid because it violated shareholder agreement and articles of association, and the company has no authority to conduct such an investigation.

He had termed all appointments for the independent audit of the company’s internal processes and systems as bad in law.

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