India's largest IT services exporter Tata Consultancy Services Ltd. is facing a legal trial in the U.S. over allegations of discrimination against American workers, according to reports.
A federal judge in Oakland, Calif., rejected TCS' plea Dec. 27 to dismiss the lawsuit filed in 2015, accusing the company of violating anti-discrimination laws by favoring South Asians.
Further, the judge has also expanded the case into a class action on behalf of American workers who lost their jobs at TCS offices in the U.S. because they were not assigned any project, according to various reports.
The lawsuit against TCS was filed by IT worker Brian Buchanan, who claimed he was subjected to "substantial anti-American sentiment" within the company and was ultimately terminated within 20 months despite having almost 20 years of experience in the field, according to the reports.
Buchanan further claimed that he was among 400 people terminated, but said he was asked to stay on for a few months to train the Indian TCS employees who were replacing him.
Tata argued that Buchanan's experience does not prove he was a victim of bias.
TCS has said, in a statement, that it will "vigorously defend its position and expects positive outcome. There are no discriminatory practices in any part of the company and TCS is confident that it will be able to defend its position at the trial."
TCS said the judge denied class certification on a litigation against the company alleging a pattern and practice of discrimination in hiring against people of non-South Asian origin but granted it with respect to allegations of discrimination in practices related to termination of employees.
Rival firm Infosys faced a similar lawsuit in Milwaukee four years ago.
Indian IT firms, including TCS and Infosys, have come under negative scrutiny due to U.S. President Donald Trump's negative rhetoric on visas and jobs, according to reports.
In June, TCS said it had hired more than 12,500 people in the country in the last five years, and expects to remain at par or exceed prior years' levels for 2017.
It operates in over 50 countries, including the U.S., and counts amongst its employees nationals from over 100 countries, reports said.