In its second legal notice to Cyrus Mistry in two days, Tata Sons on Thursday demanded that the ousted chairperson return all confidential data and documents in his possession that pertain to the conglomerate and not retain any copies either. It has also demanded a written confirmation that Mistry has not shared any “confidential information” regarding the holding company to his family members, relatives or affiliates, as well as to firms controlled by him and his family.
“Confidential information shall mean all business, legal, commercial or technical information of the company to which you had access as director,” said the letter, sent to the ousted Tata Sons chief by their lawyers. “Confidential information shall include, without limitation, all original and copies of files...”
The notice further alleged that Tata Sons had “credible information” that Mistry had “wrongfully and dishonestly taken movable property”, referring to papers with confidential data, Reuters reported. The letter was sent days after the conglomerate accused Mistry of breaching confidentiality rules and making sensitive data public.
Responding to the second notice, Mistry’s office said it was “ironic” that Tata Sons was widely publicising that their confidentiality had been circulated in the media. “Such conduct is unbecoming,” the statement read. “We will neither comment on it in public nor provide correspondence to the media to make news, but will keep the focus on the real and core issues.”
On December 19, Mistry had decided to resign from all Tata Group companies, saying it was time to “be more incisive in securing the best interest of the Tata Group”. He had said that Ratan Tata staged “an illegal coup” on October 24, the day he was sacked from his post in the company.
Mistry has been in a widely publicised battle with the Tata camp since he was stripped of his chairmanship. Since then, he has been removed from the board of directors from a number of operating companies under the Tata Group, including Tata Steel, Tata Industries, Tata Consultancy Services and Tata Teleservices.
On December 20, two firms controlled by Mistry’s family – Cyrus Investments and Sterling Investments – had sued Tata Sons. In their petition filed in the National Company Law Tribunal, they had accused Tata Sons of bad practices, oppression and mismanagement. The Mumbai court has directed the companies to submit documented proof of the allegations they made against Tata Sons.