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HUMAN RIGHTS NEWSWHISTLEBLOWING AND HUMAN RIGHTS

Whistle-blower is one who reveals the wrongdoing within an organization to the public or concern authority. A disclosure refers to a concern, usually raised by an employee or group of employees of the Company or even a third party, in writing and in good faith, which discloses or demonstrates information about an unethical or improper activity with respect to the Company and based on actual facts and which complaint is not speculative.

Whistleblowing is defined as an act of disclosing information by an employee or any concerned stakeholder about an illegal or unethical conduct within an organization.

If we talk about the social perception of whistleblowing which is considered as a heroic action which requires a lot of courage for whistleblowing because a person who blows a whistle against any unethical or illegal activity put everything on stake.

But the major things that need to concern is about the aftermath of blowing a whistle because there have cases which is clear violation of fundamental rights, human rights as well as economic rights of individual or may be entire family of the whistleblower. Because the world has witnessed the consequence of whistleblowing that may include any or all of the following:

· Voice is scuttled and made them suffer for their audacity.

· Fired, demoted or harassed in other ways.

· Loses their job and ostracized for their activity.

· Sometimes they are charged for violating law or employment agreement.

· In extreme cases they get murdered or along with their family (murder of journalist along with their family)


Some of the recent whistleblowing act and its consequences of the act:

· A whistleblower, Guru Pratap Reddy alias Gurunatha Reddy, was killed in a group clash at Pengi Ananthapur village of Kondapuram mandal in Kadapa district on Friday. He had complained of malpractices in the Gandikota R&R package[1].

· Li and seven other whistleblowers were arrested for spreading rumours. Only last week, as the coronavirus outbreak kept 50 million Chinese people on lockdown and accelerated around the world, did authorities concede that Li and the others should not have been censured[2].

· Death of whistleblower -There is a burgeoning field of research on whistleblower retaliation and a hostile work environment that causes stress-related disorders, such as PTSD, depression and suicide[3].

· Dr Rick Bright: White House whistleblower who alleged Trump administration’s coronavirus failures resigns[4].

· Democratic representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has said that the US needs to “atone” for human rights violations, in response to allegations of abuse against migrants from an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) whistleblower[5].

· Philip Haney: FBI to investigate death of DHS whistleblower initially thought to be suicide[6].

· Trump tax returns: Whistleblower complaint alleges 'inappropriate attempts to influence' president's finances[7].

· Hundreds of whistleblowers claim they faced recriminations as NHS fears repeat of Gosport scandal[8].

· Sarawak Report whistleblowing website blocked by Malaysia after PM corruption allegations[9].

· Paddy scam whistleblower Surendra Shakya found dead in Chhattisgarh, kin alleges foul play. The multi-crore paddy scam in Chhattisgarh is turning sinister similar to the Vyapam[10].

Likewise, there are hundreds of such human rights violations of the individual for the noble work of exposing unethical people. But the thing that notices here is that on paper there are laws on papers for protection of whistleblowers e.g. whistleblower protection act, 2014 an Indian legislation but it is still not effective enough to protect the life of whistleblowers. This is a very serious concern at national as well as international level.

Therefore the need of the hour is for the for stringent legislation for the protection of whistleblowers.


UTKARSH

NATIONAL LAW INSTITUTE UNIVERSITY



[1] https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/whistleblower-done-to-death-in-group-clash/article33097997.ece [2] https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2020-02-06/coronavirus-china-xi-li-wenliang [3] https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/03/20/death-of-a-whistleblower-suicide-pentagon-office-inspector-general/ [4] https://www.independent.co.uk/us/dr-rick-bright-whistleblower-trump-coronavirus-resign-quit-national-institutes-health-b855404.html [5] https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/aoc-ice-detention-camp-surgery-investigation-whistleblower-b447596.html [6] https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/philip-haney-death-whistleblower-obama-fbi-homeland-security-a9362061.html [7] https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/trump-tax-returns-whistleblower-complaint-richard-neal-a9133446.html [8] https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/gosport-scandal-latest-inquiry-jane-barton-whistleblowers-deaths-war-memorial-hospital-a8410761.html [9] https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/sarawak-report-whistleblowing-website-blocked-malaysia-after-pm-corruption-allegations-10402770.html [10] https://www.india.com/topic/whistleblower-death/

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