NITES condemns IBM Email for its employees on moonlighting

NITES Condemns IBM India’s Email To It’s Employees; Says, “This Is Clear Violation Of Human Rights And Personal Liberty”
Recently, Global tech major, IBM which employs over lakh individuals in India, has sent a strong message dissuading employees from moonlighting without following due process.

Nascent Information Technology Employees Senate (NITES) has condemned IBM’s Email to its employees. It has been said that it is a clear Violation of Human Rights & Personal Liberty.

Recently, Global tech major, IBM which employs over lakh individuals in India, has sent a strong message dissuading employees from moonlighting without following due process. India MD Sandip Patel has said it’s a violation of trust, and policy and creates a potential conflict of interest.

The note said, “At IBM, our stance has always been clear: we encourage every IBMer to bring their whole selves to work. Your passion – be it for art, dance, or music is celebrated here, and in that spirit, we’d love to see you pursue your interests.”

“However, if you advance a personal interest, whether directly or indirectly, at the expense of IBM, it is treated as a serious conflict of interest and a violation of trust,” The note added.

An email sent by Sandip Patel, Managing Director for IBM India/South Asia Region, said, “IBM’s employment contracts require that employees refrain from engaging in any other employment or business in any role or capacity and not compete with IBM. IBM’s Business Conduct Guidelines (BCGs) also make it clear under Guidelines 71 and 72 that while an IBMers’ time outside of work is their own, it also requires them to avoid engaging in activities that create a conflict of interest with IBM’s business. IBM’s BCGs highlight that providing assistance to a competitor in any capacity is a clear conflict of interest.”

Patel said he’s writing to employees because “the moonlighting concept can cause a lot of confusion if not clarified at a granular level.”

Engaging in a second job, part-time, full-time, or contractual is a failure to comply with the terms of employment and a potential conflict of interest with that IBM, the note said.

Last Month, IBM’s managing director for India and South Asia, Sandip Patel said, at the time of joining, the company’s employees sign an agreement saying they will be working only for IBM.

“…notwithstanding what people can do in the rest of their time, it is not ethically right to do that (moonlighting),” Patel told reporters on the sidelines of a company event.

Following this, Harpreet Singh Saluja President, Nascent Information Technology Employees Senate (NITES) said, “Probably the time has come to remind IT organizations that IT Employees are neither slaves nor bonded labours. The company stated that if an employee wants to pursue his or her passion be it dance, art or music has to be celebrated inside IBM.”

“And if an employee wants to carry on the passion in personal life that it would be treated as a conflict of interest and violation of trust. This shows the capitalist mindset of the company which is trying to capture and restrict the thought process of employees”, NITES President added.

NITES President added, “Moreover, IBM’s email states that if employees want to support an NGO or philanthropic activity in their personal time then they need to take permission first from the company. This is a clear violations of Human Rights and Personal Liberty. Right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Indian Constitution.”

“The right to privacy is also recognized as a basic human rights under Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Act, 1948, which state that no one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence”, he further added.


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