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Microsoft auditing partner KPMG's anti-piracy work in India after complaint -documents

Reuters  |  NEW DELHI 

By and Aditya Kalra

(Reuters) - is investigating the methods partner uses to crack down on the illegal use of its in India, after a complaint from a senior member of the country's ruling political party, documents seen by showed.

is one of the U.S. firm's biggest markets in Asia, yet over half of all installed on computers in the country is unlicensed, advocacy group Alliance said in 2016.

A pirated compact disc of Microsoft's Windows 10 can be bought for around $2 in New Delhi, compared with $130 needed to buy the from Microsoft's

To ensure compliance, Microsoft runs a global "asset management" (SAM) programme under which it partners global consultants, such as in India, which seek permission from business owners to check for the use of

Last month, Vinit Goenka, a member of the and adviser to the government, complained to both companies that a employee "barged in" to his recruitment firm without an appointment to check its software, according to emails reviewed by

Rajiv Sodhi, a senior executive, told in a March 20 email that the company was looking at the issue with "utmost seriousness".

"We are also getting an assessment agency to carry out an audit of the process delivery at to identify and correct gaps, if any," Sodhi wrote in the email reviewed by

Sodhi did not respond to a request for comment.

Microsoft told its SAM programme is run as per global standards, while said it follows "appropriate procedures agreed in our engagement with clients". Both declined to comment on the alleged incident and probe.

The employee, who identified himself in the emails as Srijesh, declined to comment.

confirmed the incident and complaint, telling the handful of computers at his company, Ratein Infotech, used genuine He said he planned to file a police complaint against both companies.

last month received a letter from the U.S. firm saying it needed help in "interpreting licensing policies of Microsoft", the emails showed. The issue escalated when the employee entered Ratien's office on March 15.

Microsoft and apologised and the employee, Srijesh, resigned, the e-mails showed.

"This is part of my regular job, that I do on a daily basis as directed by and Microsoft," wrote in an apology email to Goenka, seen by

is a former employee of and advises government committees on initiatives.

(Reporting by and Aditya Kalra; Editing by and Christopher Cushing)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, April 13 2018. 16:16 IST