The unprecedented move comes as industry analysts have criticized Pandit for reaping excessive rewards too easily.

Citigroup shareholders voted yesterday against a $15 million executive pay package for its chief executive, Vikram Pandit, at the company’s annual meeting in Dallas. The unprecedented move comes as industry analysts have criticized Pandit for reaping excessive rewards too easily.

CEO pay at other banks has been continuing to defy gravity but this is the first time stockowners have joined forces to reject a compensation package at a major Wall Street bank.

At the financial giant’s meeting, about 55 percent of the shareholders either voted against the plan or abstained. Such majority votes against compensation– in this case including attractive packages for the bank’s four top executives, as well as for Pandit – are rare. But under Dodd-Frank’s say-on-pay provision, shareholders now have a right to express opinions and concerns about soaring executive pay.

‘When you have contented shareholders, you don’t see these kind of votes,’ says Charles Elson, director of the John Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware. ‘These votes are clearly a reflection of how the shareholders perceive the executives and it’s a good idea to make sure such votes don’t go un-responded.’

Last year, Pandit’s compensation included $1.67 million in salary and a $5.3 million cash bonus. He was also awarded a retention package valued at $40 million that will be dispersed through 2015, the New York Times reports.

Investors say that given the bank’s recent financial performance it is too early to start distributing generous pay packages. ‘The company has been flat-lining,’ says Mike McCauley, a senior officer at the Florida State Board of Administration, which voted its 6.4 million shares against the plan. ‘The plan put forth reveals a disconnect between pay and performance.’

While the vote isn’t binding, Citgroup’s retiring chairman Richard Parsons has reportedly said that he takes the votes seriously and changes will be made.