You are here: Home » Markets » News
Business Standard

Over 100 companies add women directors to their boards

Deadline for appointing one woman director on to company boards is April 1, 2015

Sneha Padiyath  |  Mumbai 

Image via Shutterstock

On Monday, about 120 companies added to their boards, the highest such addition on a single day, as the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi)-mandated deadline for companies to have at least one woman director on their boards neared. Ahead of the April 1 deadline, many more listed companies are expected to hold board meetings on Tuesday to approve the appointment of DB Realty, Ramco Cements, Alstom T&D India, Asian Hotels, Hindustan Motors, Lanco Infratech, were among those that announced the appointment of on Monday.

“In the past four or five days, we have seen a lot of companies appointing women directors to comply with the norms. However, there would still be many companies, including public sector undertakings, which might not be able to meet the requirement,” said Pranav Haldea, managing director, Experts said several of the top 200 companies were yet to meet the norm. These included public sector entities such as of India, Punjab National Bank, Indian Bank, Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL), and Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilisers.

LAST-MINUTE RUSH
  • On Monday, about 120 companies on appoint women directors on to their boards
  • DB Realty, Lanco Infratech, Ramco Cements, Alstom T&D India, among those who announced appointments
  • Deadline for appointment of at least one woman director is April 1
  • said stern action will be taken against companies failing to comply
  • Several PSUs among those which are yet to comply

As of Friday, 1,590 companies on the and 355 companies on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) were yet to appoint women on their boards, according to data from There are 3,960 listed companies on the and 1,478 listed companies on the As such, even after Monday’s announcements, 1,400 companies on the BSE and about 200 on the are yet to appoint woman directors.

In February 2014, had issued guidelines asking listed companies to appoint at least one woman director on their boards by October 1, 2014. Later, the deadline was extended to April 1, 2015.

Speaking at a Confederation of Indian Industry-organised capital seminar on Monday, chief said many companies were lax about complying with the norms. “Having at least one women director in the board is a Sebi requirement, as also a requirement...I suspect there are a number of companies that have not found competent women to be on their boards. Such an attitude should be contained. What messages are we giving to the outside world on a small matter like this?” he asked.

He said companies that didn’t meet the deadline would have to pay a penalty. However, he didn’t give details in this regard. Representation of women on company boards has become a major issue globally, with countries and companies mandating gender quotas in boardrooms. Recently, Germany announced at least 30 per cent of supervisory positions must be filled with women.

According to a 2014 survey by MSCI, boards with gender diversity, over and above regulatory mandates or market norms, had fewer instances of governance-related scandals such as bribery, corruption and fraud.

First Published: Mon, March 30 2015. 22:47 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU