HindustanTimes Fri,26 Dec 2014

Identify whistleblower before probing accused: DoPT

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, June 18, 2014
First Published: 23:57 IST(18/6/2014) | Last Updated: 00:01 IST(19/6/2014)

In a new procedure notified for dealing with complaints filed by officials, the department of personnel and training (DoPT) said the officer designated under public interest disclosure resolution of 2004 will have to first get the identity of the complainant verified.

The government will probe the accused only after the complainant’s credentials are verified and he gives an undertaking that the complaint has not been lodged with any other government agency.

The DoPT has issued a detailed procedure for handling of complaints under Public Interest Disclosure and Protection of Informers (PIDPI) Resolution.

This exercise would have to undertaken even if the complainant has provided his identity details. The apparent reason for the procedure is to prevent any impersonation as there have been cases of complaints being filed in name of other officers.

The complainant will also have to give an undertaking that he or she has not filed the same petition with any other government agency to qualify as “whistle blower” complainant.

Once that happens, the designated officer will ensure that the identity of the complainant is removed from the body of the complaint and it is forwarded for investigation. This will be done to protect the identity of the complainant. The instruction also provides for giving protection to a whistleblower.

If the vigilance officer of a department believes that the whistleblower needs protection he will have to recommend the same to the central vigilance officer to issue proper directions to the concerns authorities, the instruction says.

The department has extended the scope of the rule to all central government offices, including companies, societies and local authorities controlled by the Centre.

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