"whistleblowers" are individuals who witness an illegal and improper acts and inform it to the public. This is done with a view to have the witnessed act stopped, sanctioned and rectified. One should grant whistleblowers their anonymity in public interest.
As per the Press Release issued by Central Vigilance Commission, the Government of India has authorized the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) as the ‘Designated Agency’ to receive written complaints for disclosure on any allegation of corruption or misuse of office and recommend appropriate action.
The jurisdiction of the Commission in this regard would be restricted to any employee of the Central Government or of any corporation established by or under any Central Act, government companies, societies or local authorities owned or controlled by the Central Government. Personnel employed by the State
Governments and activities of the State Governments or its Corporations etc. will not come under the purview of the Commission.
In this regard, the Commission, which will accept such complaints, has the responsibility of keeping the identity of the complainant secret. Hence, it is informed to the general public that any complaint, which is to be made under this resolution should comply with the following aspects.
i) The complaint should be in a closed / secured envelope.
ii) The envelope should be addressed to Secretary, Central Vigilance Commission and should be superscribed “Complaint under The Public Interest Disclosure”. If the envelope is not superscribed and closed, it will not be possible for the Commission to protect the complainant under the above resolution and the complaint will be dealt with as per the normal complaint policy of the
Commission. The complainant should give his/her name and address in the beginning or end of complaint or in an attached letter.
iii) Commission will not entertain anonymous/pseudonymous complaints.
iv) The text of the complaint should be carefully drafted so as not to give any details or clue as to his/her identity. However, the details of the complaint should be specific and verifiable.
v) In order to protect identity of the person, the Commission will not issue any acknowledgement and the whistle-blowers are advised not to enter into any further correspondence with the Commission in their own interest. The Commission assures that, subject to the facts of the case being verifiable,
it will take the necessary action, as provided under the Government of India Resolution mentioned above. If any further clarification is required, the Commission will get in touch with the complainant.
The Commission can also take action against complainants making motivated/vexatious complaints under this Resolution.
A copy of detailed notification is available on the web-site of the Commission http://www.cvc.ni
The government of India has also drafted a Public Interest Disclosure and Protection of Informers' Bill 2002.
Until the entry into force of this Bill, the Central Government of India, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, has enacted Resolution No. 89 on 21 April 2004 (given below). This resolution grants a protection mechanism similar to the one foreseen by the Public Interest Disclosure and Protection of Informers' Bill 2002.
The Central Vigilance Commission has been designated to handle complaints submitted under the Resolution (Office Order No. 33/5/2004). (given below)
If my memory serves me right, the Bill has not become an Act so far, if it has happened, please let me know.
Government of India Resolution No. 89, Gazette of India Part I Section I
MINISTRY OF PERSONNEL, PUBLIC GRIEVANCES AND PENSIONS
(Department of Personnel and Training)
New Delhi, the 21st April, 2004 [as corrected by the corrigendum of 29th April 2004]
No. 371/12/2002-AVD-III.—Whereas while hearing Writ Petition (C) No. 539/2003 regarding the murder of Shri
Satyendra Dubey, the question of a suitable machinery for acting on complaints from “whistle-blowers” arose.
And whereas the ‘The Public Interest Disclosure and Protection of Informers’ Bill, 2002, drafted by the Law
Commission is under examination.
Now, therefore, the Central Government hereby resolves as under:
1. The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) is hereby authorized, as the Designated Agency to receive written
complaints or disclosure on any allegation of corruption or of mis-use of office by any employee of the Central
Government or of any corporation established by or under any Central Act, Government companies, societies or
local authorities owned or controlled by the Central Government The disclosure or complaint shall contain as full
particulars as possible and shall be accompanied by supporting documents or other material.
2. The designated agency may, if it deems fit call for further information or particulars from the persons making the
disclosure. If the complaint is anonymous, the designated agency shall not take any action in the matter.
3. Not anything contained in the Official Secrets Aft, 1923, any public servant other than those referred to clauses (a) to (d) of Article 33 of the Constitution or any other person including any non-governmental organisation, may
make a written disclosure to the designated agency.
4. If the complaint is accompanied by particulars of the person making the complaint, the designated agency shall take the following steps:
(i) The designated agency will ascertain from the complainant whether he was the person who made the
complaint or not.
(ii) The identity of the complainant will not be revealed unless the complainant himself has made the details of
the complaint either public or disclosed his identity to any other office or authority.
(iii) After concealing the identity of the complainant, the designated agency shall make, in the first instance,
discreet inquiries to ascertain if there is any basis of proceeding further with the complaint. For this purpose,
the designated agency shall devise an appropriate machinery
(iv) Either as a result of the discreet inquiry, or on the basis of the complaint itself without any inquiry if the
designated agency is of the opinion that the matter requires to be investigated further, the designated agency
shall officially seek comments/or explanation from the Head of the Department of the concerned
organisation or office. While doing so, the designated agency shall not disclose the identity of the informant
and also shall request the concerned Head of the organisation to keep the identity of the informant secret, if
for any reason, the concerned Head comes to know the identity.
(v) After obtaining the response of the concerned organisation, if the designated agency is of the opinion that
the reveal either mis-use of office or substantiate allegations of corruption, the designated agency shall
recommend appropriate action to the concerned Government Department or Organization. These shall,
inter alia, include following:
(a) Appropriate proceedings to be initiated against the concerned Government servant.
(b) Appropriate administrative steps for redressing the loss caused to the Government as a result of
the corrupt act or mis-use of office, as the case maybe.
(c) Recommend to the appropriate authority/agency initiation of criminal proceedings in suitable
cases if warranted by the facts and circumstances of the case.
(d) Recommend taking of corrective measures to prevent recurrence of such events in future.
5. For the purpose of making discreet inquiry or obtaining information from the concerned organisation, the
designated agency shrill be authorized to call upon the CBI or the police authorities, as considered necessary, to
render all assistance to complete the investigation pursuant to the complaint received.
6. If any person is aggrieved by any action on the ground that he is being victimized due to the fact that he had filed a complaint or disclosure, he may file an application before the designated agency seeking redress in the matter, who shall take such action, as deemed fit. The designated agency may give suitable directions to the concerned public servant or the public authority as the case may be.
7. Either on the application of the complainant; or on the basis of the information gathered, if the designated agency is of the opinion that either the complainant or the witnesses need protection, the designated agency shall issue appropriate directions to the concerned Government authorities.
8. The machinery evolved herein shall be in addition to the existing mechanisms in place. However, secrecy of identity shall be observed, only if the complaint is received under this machinery,
9. In case the designated agency finds the complaint to be motivated or vexatious, the designated agency shall be at liberty to take appropriate steps.
10. The designated agency shall not entertain or inquire into any disclosure:
(a) in respect of which a formal and public inquiry has been ordered under the Public Servants Inquiries 1850;
(b) in respect of a matter which has been referred for inquiry under the Commissions of Inquiry Act, 1952.
11. In the event of the identity of the informant being disclosed in spite of the designated agency’s directions to the
contrary, the designated agency is authorized to initiate appropriate action as per extant regulations against the
person or agency making such disclosure.
12. The machinery created herein shall operate till Parliament passes a law on the subject.
SMT. MANJULIKA GAUTAM, Addl. Sec
Government of India
Central Vigilance Commission
Satarkta Bhawan, Block ‘A’,
GPO Complex, INA,
New Delhi- 110 023
Dated the 17th May, 2004
Office Order No. 33/5/2004
Subject:- Govt. of India Resolution on Public Interest Disclosures & Protection of Informer.
The Government of India has authorised the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) as the ‘Designated Agency’ to receive written complaints for disclosure on any allegation of corruption or misuse of office and recommend
2. A copy of the Public Notice issued by the Central Vigilance Commission with respect to the above mentioned Resolution is enclosed. All CVOs are further required to take the following actions with respect to the complaints
forwarded by the Commission under this Resolution:
(i) All the relevant papers/documents with respect to the matter raised in the complaint should be obtained by the CVO and investigation into the complaint should be commenced immediately. The investigation report should be submitted to the Commission within two weeks.
(ii) The CVO is to ensure that no punitive action is taken by any concerned Administrative authority against any person on perceived reasons/suspicion of being “whistle blower.”
(iii) Subsequent to the receipt of Commission’s directions to undertake any disciplinary action based on such complaints, the CVO has to follow up and confirm compliance of further action by the DA and keep the Commission informed of delay, if any.
(iv) Contents of this order may be brought to the notice of Secy./CEO/CMD.
All CVOs may note the above directions for compliance.
All Chief Vigilance Officers