2nd lawsuit alleges Infosys misuses US work visas

Associated Press Modified: August 9, 2012 at 3:29 pm •  Published: August 9, 2012

MUMBAI, India (AP) — Indian outsourcing giant Infosys Technologies is facing a second case in U.S. courts over harassment stemming from alleged abuses of U.S. work visas.

A former Infosys account manager filed a lawsuit on Aug. 2 in Northern California's U.S. District Court. Satya Dev Tripuraneni, who worked for Infosys for about five years, claims he was harassed after blowing the whistle on misuse of U.S. visas.

"We are investigating all his claims," Infosys spokeswoman Sukanya Ghosh said Thursday.

The charges echo those of employee Jack Palmer, who filed a lawsuit in 2011 alleging he was harassed after alerting Infosys managers to visa abuses.

Palmer said Infosys repeatedly used temporary B-1 visitor visas — designed to allow foreigners to come to the U.S. for meetings or conferences — to bring over full-time workers from India, avoiding longer term H1B work visas, which cost more and are harder to get. Palmer also said Infosys kept those employees on their low Indian salaries, even though they were working full time in the United States, failed to withhold U.S. taxes and overbilled customers for labor costs.

Mediation efforts in that case failed and a trial is scheduled for Aug. 20.

"We categorically deny any allegation or assertion that there is or was a corporate policy of evading the law in connection with the B-1 Visa program," Ghosh said by email. "Our position is the same now as it has been from the beginning: We have not retaliated against any employee for bringing any suspected incident to the company's attention and we look forward to addressing this matter soon in open court."

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