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Khushi Gupta

Published on: May 29, 2022 at 16:25 IST

The Madras High Court recently observed that, even though the courts had a duty to protect the rights of whistle-blowers, the whistle-blowers are expected to exercise their rights in the manner known to law and excess exercise or high handedness can never be allowed.

Justice SM Subramaniam and Justice J Sathya Narayana Prasad were considering a plea to enquire into the enhancement of the financial and social status of a whistle-blower.

The Petitioner alleged that, the whistle-blower was filing Petitions for initiation of action against officials of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments [HR&CE] Department and the temple authorities and in the process was acting excessively inside the temple premises and threatening officials and staff of the temple.

Thus, it was argued that the whistle-blower is interfering with the peaceful worship of the devotees and abusing his position as a whistle-blower.

The whistle-blower, on the other hand, stated that he has no intention to commit any illegality or irregularity as alleged. He admitted that there was a quarrel between himself and the officials but that he had no intention to threaten or act in any manner in violation of the law.

The Court observed that rights of both the Petitioner and the whistle-blower is to be protected. While exercising the rights, if any excessiveness has been committed by any person, the authorities or the persons concerned are empowered to lodge a complaint before higher authorities and before the police authorities for taking appropriate actions in manner known to law. In the event of any such complaint the authorities are expected to act immediately by conducting an enquiry and by following the procedures.

The Court also observed that when a person is exercising certain rights, he has to keep in mind that he has got certain duties towards the fellow citizen of our great nation.

The Court thus disposed the Petition, considering the submission made by the whistle-blower that he will continue his public services in order to protect the temples and its properties in accordance to law and by following procedures.

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