Barclays Challenges Indian Court Ruling on Whistleblower Retaliation Case

In a recent legal development, Barclays (BARC.L) is contesting a ruling by an Indian court that accused the bank of retaliating against a whistleblower. The case revolves around a former senior IT manager, Atul Gupta, who raised concerns about the mishandling of a significant data loss incident. The Pune District Court criticised Barclays, alleging their whistleblowing policy existed merely on paper. The court ordered the bank to pay Gupta two years’ salary, amounting to approximately 9,600,000 Indian rupees ($115,620), citing his redundancy as retaliation for whistleblowing. Barclays is now appealing the decision at the Bombay High Court, with a hearing scheduled for October 20.

Barclays has affirmed its commitment to fostering an environment where employees can voice concerns without fear of repercussions, underscoring a zero-tolerance policy against whistleblower retaliation. The case raises questions about the consistency of Barclays’ whistleblowing procedures across its subsidiaries. The controversy originated from the accidental deletion of 1.4 terabytes of data in August 2019, resulting in a significant financial loss for the bank. Gupta reported his concerns through various channels, leading to his redundancy in February 2020. The situation highlights challenges faced by organisations in safeguarding whistleblowers’ rights and the necessity for transparent internal processes, with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) closely monitoring the developments.


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