The Straits Times
Published on Nov 23, 2012

Wal-Mart suspends India staff in corruption probe


MUMBAI (AP) - Wal-Mart's Indian joint venture said on Friday that it has suspended several employees as part of an internal corruption investigation, another blow to the US company's plans for aggressive expansion in a giant market that is largely untapped by foreign retailers.

Bharti Walmart, Wal-Mart's joint venture with India's Bharti Enterprises, said it had suspended "a few associates" and was "committed to conducting a complete and thorough investigation."

India's Economic Times newspaper reported that the company's chief financial officer was among the five employees suspended, a claim the company declined to verify.

The news comes at a sensitive time for foreign retailers in India, where corruption scandals in everything from telecommunications to coal mining have badly damaged the ruling Congress Party.