Laws on sexual harassment at workplace in India

Laws on sexual harassment at workplace in India

Lewd behaviour is a kind of bias in light of sex, demurely assaulting the humility, respect, deference of a person. When somebody is sexually hassled at the work environment, it can influence the persona from various perspectives; it undermines the capability of a man to work and perform well at the working environment. Businesses which don't make strides for counteractive action of inappropriate behaviour at working environment can endure real misfortune in the profitability of association and endure legitimate costs on the off chance that they can't satisfy the directions recommended under Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013. Sexual Harassment results in the violations of fundamental rights of women under section 14 and 15 of the constitution of India, equality and right to life and live with dignity under article 21 of the constitution of India, the Right to practice any profession, trade or business with a safe working environment. Sexual harassment includes any unwelcome conduct or demonstration of lead of sexual in nature.

The Sexual Harassment of women at workplace Act 2013  endeavours to target sexual harassment as a social threat and in this way, has a more extensive transmit. Employers are required to set up an internal complaints committee (ICC) at the office or at it branches which has 10 or more employees. The committee should have a minimum of four members, at least half of them should be women and the will hear the sexual harassment complaints. A Local Complaints Committee (LCC) should be set up in each district to hear complaints from organisations where there are less  than ten employees or where the complaint is against the employer .

The complaint to the ICC or LCC must be made within three months of the date of the incident or if there has been a series of incidents, within the  period of three months from the date of the last incident. The ICC or LCC’s inquiry into the allegation of sexual harassment should be concluded within 90 days, and the employer must assist them by providing documents etc. The complaint to the ICC or LCC must normally be made within three months of the date of the alleged incident or if there has been a series of incidents, within a period of three months from the date of the last incident. The ICC or LCC’s inquiry into the allegation of sexual harassment should be concluded within 90 days, and the employer must assist them by providing documents etc. The employers should organise regular workshops and awareness trainings for employees regarding this issue. Employers should also help employee with filing a criminal complain if she wants.  If employers fail to comply with the Act, they may be fined up to Rupees 50,000 . Repeated non-compliance could lead to the local authority cancelling their certificate which permits them to carry on their business.

Indian Penal Code of 1860 and Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013

Section (S.)354 of IPC says that in case of assault committed with a deliberate intention to outrage the modesty of women will penalizes for a term not less than 1 year or up to 5 years along with fine. Section 509 punishes for any word, act, or gesture intended to insult the modesty of woman. It provides for simple imprisonment for a term extending up to 3 years along with fine.

Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 specifically deals with sexual harassment, disrobe, voyeurism and stalking in relation to SHW whereas an act of physical and sexual assault is dealt with in S.375, S.376, 376A, S.376D, 326A & 362B with a punishment of one year along with fine extending to death sentence under the Act.

With increase in number of women in the workplace, the number of complaints of sexual harassment has also increased. But the social attitudes to the treatment of women have changed in India. Aggrieved employees are no longer prepared to suffer in silence while sexual harassment is accepted and ignored.  It is imperative that employers comply fully with their obligations under the Act, not only to avoid incurring fines and suffering reputational damage, but also to embrace what the Act is seeking to achieve. Sexual Harassment of women at workplace Act 2013 as a tool for the oppression of women and hence it is women’s right to object to her ill-treatment at workplaces and strive to express her freely, without any fear. The aim of law is to prosecute offenders and render justice to the victim, though much remains to be done to improve the situation of women at workplaces. Therefore, it is the duty of the society to publicize the concerns about Sexual Harassment of women at workplace Act 2013 and establish a society, free from gender-based discrimination, on the principle of natural law.



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