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With IT companies and their stocks emerging strongly from the recession, the focus is shifting to how much their top executives are taking home as salary.

Late last week, IT major Cognizant disclosed its top executives’ remuneration to American stock exchanges. CEO Francisco D’Souza earned $1.36 million as salary and bonus in 2010. That would roughly be Rs 6.14 crore converted at Rs 48.58 per dollar. This includes a base salary of Rs 2.44 crore and a bonus of Rs 3.7 crore.

In comparison, Vineet Nayar , the managing director and chief executive of HCL Technologies , took home a total of Rs 4.54 crore out of which Rs 1.2 crore was base salary (as of June 2010), according to think tank CMIE.

Natarajan Chandrasekaran of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) earned Rs 2.97 crore, which included a bonus of 2 crore. S Gopalakrishnan of Infosys earned Rs 1.01 crore and Arun Jain of Polaris Software got Rs 1.62 crore. Even Wipro’s two outgoing CEOs Girish Paranjpe and Suresh Vaswani were paid Rs 2.11 and Rs 2.96 crore, respectively , (as declared on March 31, 2010).

On a standalone basis, these salaries are not globally competitive, say recruiters . “Salaries of Indian CEOs are artificially kept low because astronomical figures at higher level will raise demands for appropriate increase in salaries in levels down the chain. This is particularly true of Indian IT companies,” said Ganesh Shermon, partner & country head (human capital) at KPMG India.

The Economic Times

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