Day after Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal resigned following a probe into what was called a ‘serious personal misconduct.’ it has emerged that the billionaire businessman had a consensual affair with an unnamed woman.
Some reports suggested that the complaint of ‘serious personal misconduct’ against 37-year-old Binny was filed some time in July this year by a woman.
In its statement, Walmart Inc had said, “His (Binny’s) decision follows an independent investigation done on behalf of Flipkart and Walmart into an allegation of serious personal misconduct.”
American giant Walmart Inc had bought 77% stake in Flipkart in May this year. While Binny’s friend and co-founder, Sachin Bansal had exited the company by selling his stakes, he had chosen to remain in his post as the group CEO.
The statement by Walmart had further stated that whilst the investigation ‘did not find evidence to corroborate the complainant’s assertions against Binny, it did reveal other lapses in judgement, particularly a lack of transparency, related to how Binny responded to the situation.’ “Because of this, we have accepted his decision to resign,” said the statement from Walmart Inc.
Bansal has ‘strongly’ denied the allegation. Meanwhile, people familiar with the complaint said that Binny Bansal was engaged in a consensual relationship with the woman in question. Although, Walmart did not specify on the nature of the allegations, the complainant was believed to have accused him of sexual assault. Bloomberg quoted an internal note by Walmart as stating, “This has been an unfortunate and challenging situation for Binny, his family and Flipkart,”
News agency PTI quoted sources as saying that this was the second time the allegation against Binny had surfaced adding that the first he was accused of sexual assault was three years ago. It’s not clear if any action was taken against him then. When the woman, an associate engaged with Flipkart and now working independently, reached out to Walmart, following which the investigation was set up.
Walmart Inc was reportedly upset that this was brought to their attention when the company was engaged in the takeover conversation.
Meanwhile, Walmart has said that Kalyan Krishnamurthy, Flipkart CEO and former Tiger Global Management executive, and Sameer Nigam, CEO, PhonePe (Flipkart’s payments arm), will report directly to the board.