Infosys Told to Fix Glitches on MCA Portal Co risks losing out on full payment for the project; IT co, however, says entire system ‘performing as expected’
Surabhi Agarwal & Anirban Sen
New Delhi | Bengaluru: India’s second- largest software exporter Infosys has been asked to fix glitches on the corporate affairs ministry portal over the coming weeks, at least three people with knowledge of the matter said, adding the company risks losing out on full payment for the project. The move comes amid mounting criticism for its handling of the portal.
Infosys, for its part, defended itself against allegations of not fixing the glitches on time and said that the entire system was “performing as expected”, adding that the initial issues faced during the migration of the system had all been fixed.
“During the first few days after migrating to the new system, there were some issues which have been sorted out. There were some delays in the incorporation of some companies due to holidays. The ministry has made arrangements to clear the pendency by deploying additional assessment officers. This will take around 15 days to get cleared. Meanwhile, we would like to state that the system is performing as expected,” an Infosys spokeswoman said in an email to ET.
The ministry of corporate affairs (MCA), which wrote a letter to Infosys chief Vishal Sikka three weeks ago, says there has been some improvement in the system since then, but some problems still continue.
Pressure is mounting on Infosys to get the MCA project in order even as Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant launched a withering attack on Infosys on Twitter, saying that the company had let down the entire country. “I have cross-checked with secretary, corporate affairs. As (a) service provider, Infosys has let down the country," tweeted Kant in response to an aggrieved user.
A government official involved with the project said the contract to Infosys was given out two years ago on ‘build-own-operate- transfer mode and was meant to upgrade the technology, which was 10 years old.
Infosys took over the MCA contract from larger arch-rival TCS. However, an upgrade of the portal in line with the new Companies Act was put live on March 27. “Since then we have been having problems, we would have understood if they were minor in nature but the magnitude of the issues were rather large. We have taken it up strongly with the top management of the company, which has ensured quick resolution,” said the official. The person mentioned above also said the payment for the contract is linked to the service level agreements (SLA) and the ministry always deducts payment if the performance is not up to the mark. “We always make payments as per the SLA, we always deduct if the compliance is not there, this was the case even with the previous vendor,” he said.
The person added that MCA is a consolidated portal for compliance requirements as well as regulatory filings. Also, the provisions of the new Companies Act had to be reflected through the new portal. The earlier system designed in 2006 and was Java based, which had to be upgraded with enhanced functions such as data transparency, and make it more user friendly along with making the back office operations of RoC centralised etc.