In February, as India braced for the full impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Lithium Urban Technologies was preoccupied with its own paradigm shift. Its CEO and co-founder Sanjay Krishnan, who led the electric vehicle (EV)-only cab startup since its inception in 2014, was stepping into a non-executive role. Ashwin Mahesh, the other co-founder, and so far, a somewhat distant, strategic thought leader in the company, would take up day-to-day operations instead. 

Publicly, Krishnan was stepping back due to “personal reasons”. However, according to information sourced by The Ken, the leadership shuffle also came on the back of a company-wide audit conducted by multinational audit firm Ernst & Young.