Over 150 Google employees from three offices in India-Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Gurugram-walked out on Thursday to protest against the lenient manner in which the technology company dealt with cases of global executives involved in sexual harassment cases.
They demanded Google commit to end pay inequity, a long festering issue at the company that led to a gender bias suit. A flyer left at employees' desks explains that they've left in protest of the lack of transparency surrounding sexual assault cases.
Other demands included a uniform process for reporting sexual misconduct anonymously across the company and increased powers for Google's chief diversity officer.
But it was revealed by the Times that Google executives asked for Rubin's resignation after an employee accused Rubin of sexual misconduct, specifically that he coerced the female employee to perform oral sex.
"Employees have raised constructive ideas for how we can improve our policies and our processes going forward", Pichai said in the statement.
The huge payouts have been raising questions over whether Google has been taking workplace sexual harassment seriously.More news: Lakers falter again in the stretch, losing to Minnesota 124-120
"I'm pissed off", said Google employee Mal Gilbert.
Staff at Google offices around the world, including Dublin, are staging an unprecedented series of walkouts in protest at the company's treatment of women.
About 1000 employees at Google's headquarters in San Francisco walked off the job for half an hour on Thursday, chanting: "Women's rights are workers' rights!"
"Although it's not necessarily something that's happened to me, I understand that this is something that is real and has impacted so many lives", said associate account strategist Brandon McGhee.
Google employees have been sharing pictures on social media of the various protests. The report said Rubin received a $90 million severance package in 2014 even though Google had concluded that the sexual misconduct allegations against him were credible.
"Over the past two years, we have terminated 48 people, including 13 senior managers and above for sexual harassment", Pichai noted in his email.
The walkouts have already begun in Tokyo and Singapore offices with employees posting pictures on Twitter and Facebook using the hashtag #GoogleWalkout. "We want to assure you that we review every single complaint about sexual harassment or inappropriate conduct, we investigate and we take action", Pichai and Naughton said in the email.