India: Civil society raises concerns over censure of IIM Bangalore professor in connection with statements about Hindustan Unilever’s environmental record
In October 2018, the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIM-B), a leading business university, issued a censure against Associate Professor Deepak Malghan, requesting that he retract a statement encouraging management to disinvite Hindustan Unilever Ltd. (HUL) from a student recruitment event. Professor Malghan's statement relates to ongoing environmental concerns associated with mercury contamination arising from the closure of HUL's thermometer factory in Kondaikanal. IIM-B stated that the censure was based on allegations of impermissibly communicating directly with stakeholders (in this case, students) and other issues allegedly occuring over a long period of time. Professor Malghan retracted his statement "under protest" and is appealing the censure. Civil society groups have crticised IIM-B, citing concerns for "the rapidly decreasing spaces to discuss and debate development trajectories premised on the denial of human rights of the weaker and voiceless sections in India" (The Human Rights and Business Network, India).