Cabinet approves amendments in the Whistle Blowers Protection Act, 2011
The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi yesterday approved amendments in the Whistle Blowers Protection Act, 2011 by moving an amendment Bill in Parliament during the Budget Session, 2015. A Press Information Bureau release said that it is being done with a view to incorporate necessary provisions aimed at strengthening safeguards against disclosures which may prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of the country, security of the State, etc. The amendments would address concerns relating to national security. This would strengthen the safeguards against disclosures which may prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of the country, security, strategic, scientific or economic interest of the State, relations with a foreign State or leads to incitement of an offence. Safeguard have also been provided in respect of such disclosures which have been exempted under section 8(1) of the Right to Information Act, 2005. It is expected that following the Cabinet approval, the government will move an amendment bill in Parliament during the Budget session itself.
In order to give statutory protection to whistle blowers in the country, the Public Interest Disclosures and Protection to Persons making the Disclosures Bill, 2011 was introduced in the Lok Sabha in August, 2010. The said Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha, in December, 2011, as the Whistle Blowers Protection Bill, 2011 and was passed by the Rajya Sabha on 21.02.2014. The Bill has received the assent of the President on 9th May, 2014.