Things do not seem to be heading the right way for BharatPe co founder Ashneer Grover, and more importantly for now, his wife Madhuri Jain. Jain, who has been the head of controls in the unicorn fintech company for over 3 years now, has reportedly been fired for diversion of funds for personal use, during her stint as a key management employee of the company.
Jain had been named in a preliminary investigation by professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal (A&M), which linked her to alleged financial irregularities at BharatPe, namely, the use of company funds for personal purchases. The result? She has been fired from BharatPe on charges of “misappropriation of funds.”
It seems that the company had written to her about the termination yesterday, effective immediately. BharatPe confirmed the development saying, that the “services of Madhuri Jain Grover have been terminated in accordance with the terms of her employment agreement.” With the termination, all stock options (including ESOPs) vested with her have also been canceled.
Delving deeper into the matter, we see that Jain had been accused of using company funds for her personal beauty treatments, buying electronic products, and for family trips to the US and Dubai. Additionally, she allegedly paid per personal staff from the company’s accounts and produced fake receipts. Also, she is alleged to have shared confidential information, which was used to raise invoices.
On Jain’s part, she denied having resigned in the first place, saying in her letter to the unicorn’s board that it was “rather astonishing” and “defies” every known norm of “corporate governance and propriety.” She claimed that her dismissal granted Bharatpe co-founders, Bhavik Koladiya and Shasvat Nakrani, as well as CEO Suhail Sameer, the ability to “indulge in your ‘drunken orgies’ without having to wait for me (righteous lady) to leave office.” She also alleged that they treated women like objects (just like they treated her) and the “male chauvinistic” Board supported them.
She also took to Twitter and accused Sameer of “burning down” that Grover had built single-handedly. She also charged ex-SBI chairman Rajnish Kumar and Sequoia Capital India’s Harshjit Sethi of perfectly executing a ‘witch hunt’ in collusion with Sameer. Consultants Alvarez & Marsal were not spared either, and Jain criticized their conduct during the recent investigation.