Harassment of Women at Workplaces in India

Harassment of Women at Workplaces in India

(a)    to (c)  Safety and security of women in the country is of utmost priority for the Government. Keeping this in view, the Government of India has enacted The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 (SH Act) which aims to provide protection against sexual harassment of women at workplace and for the prevention and redressal of complaints of sexual harassment and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. The Act covers all women, irrespective of their age, employment status or nature of work (whether working in shifts or otherwise).

Harassment+of+women
The SH Act is a comprehensive legislation. It casts an obligation upon employers of all workplaces, including Central Government offices and hospitals, to constitute Internal Committees (ICs) for receiving complaints of sexual harassment of women at such workplaces. Further, this Act casts an obligation on District Officers notified by the appropriate governments as defined under the Act, to constitute Local Committees (LCs) in all districts for receiving complaints from organizations having less than 10 workers and the complaints against employers themselves.

As per Sections 21 and 22 of the SH Act, ICs and LCs are required to prepare annual reports in prescribed format in each calendar year and submit the same to the employer and the District Officer. The employer shall include in the annual report of his organisation the number of cases filed, if any, and their disposal under this Act or where no such report is required to be prepared, intimate such number of cases, if any, to the District Officer. The District Officer shall forward a brief report on the annual reports so received to the State Government. As such, no centralized data relating to cases of harassment of women at workplaces is maintained.

In addition various provisions such as section 354, 354A and 509 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC) are also applicable to the offences of sexual nature, including sexual harassment.
As per National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data, a total number of 57, 119 and 142 cases were registered during 2014, 2015 and 2016 respectively under the category insult to the modesty of women at office premises. The State/UT-wise details are at Annexure-I. The latest data available with NCRB pertains to the year 2016.

(d)  The Ministry of Women and Child Development issues advisories from time to time to all State Governments/ UT Administrations, Ministries/Departments of Government of India and business associations  including  Associated  Chambers  of   Commerce   &   Industry   of   India (ASSOCHAM), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) etc., to ensure effective implementation of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013. Further, all Ministries of Government of India and State governments/UT administrations have been requested to organize workshops and awareness programs in their Departments/ Offices for sensitizing employees about matters of sexual harassment at workplace and related legal provisions and redressal mechanisms. The Ministry of Women and Child Development has regularly campaigned through audio/ video spots in media for enhancing awareness about various legislations including the SH Act. Apart from the above, in order to create widespread awareness about the Act across the country, the Ministry of Women and Child Development has identified a pool of resource institutions to provide capacity building programs such as trainings, workshops etc. on the issue of sexual harassment at workplace.
ANNEXURE-I
STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO PART (a) & (b) TO LOK SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO.392 for 19.07.2019 BY SRI RAHUL RAMESH SHEWALE AND SRI BHARTRUHARI MAHTAB REGARDING ‘HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORKPLACES’
Sl. No. States/UTs At Office Premises
2014 2015
2016
1
Andhra Pradesh
3
3
7
2
Arunachal Pradesh
0
0
0
3
Assam
0
1
0
4
Bihar
0
0
73
5
Chhattisgarh
0
0
4
6
Goa
1
4
1
7
Gujarat
1
1
0
8
Haryana
1
1
3
9
Himachal Pradesh
0
1
0
10 Jammu & Kashmir
0
0
0
11 Jharkhand
0
0
1
12 Karnataka
3
5
9
13 Kerala
6
0
8
14 Madhya Pradesh
1
1
1
15 Maharashtra
10
27
11
16 Manipur
0
0
0
17 Meghalaya
0
0
0
18 Mizoram
0
0
0
19 Nagaland
0
1
0
20 Odisha
8
0
0
21 Punjab
0
0
0
22 Rajasthan
0
0
0
23 Sikkim
0
0
0
24 Tamil Nadu
2
0
0
25 Telangana
5
32
8
26 Tripura
0
0
0
27 Uttar Pradesh
0
0
4
28 Uttarakhand
0
0
0
29 West Bengal
4
6
0
30 A & N Islands
0
0
0
31 Chandigarh
0
0
2
32 D&N Haveli
0
0
0
33 Daman & Diu
0
0
0
34 Delhi UT
11
36
9
35 Lakshadweep
0
0
1
36 Puducherry
1
0
0
TOTAL (ALL INDIA)
57
119
142
The above statement was submitted by Ministry of Women and Child Development of undermentioned Lok Sabha Question:-
GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
MINISTRY OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT

LOK SABHA
STARRED QUESTION NO. 392
TO BE ANSWERED ON 19.07.2019

HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORKPLACES

392. SHRI RAHUL RAMESH SHEWALE
        SHRI BHARTRUHARI MAHTAB

Will the Minister of WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT be pleased to state:

  • (a) whether cases of harassment of women at workplaces, particularly of those performing shift duties in Central Government Offices such as Hospitals, have increased in the country during each of the last three years and the current year;
  • (b) if so, the number of such cases reported in the country during the said period, State/UT-wise;
  • (c) whether the Provisions of Protection of Women from Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 are insufficient to provide safe and secure work environment to women in the said offices in the country, if so, the details thereof and the reasons therefor; and
  • (d) the steps taken by the Government to protect women from harassment at workplaces and to inculcate a sense of respect in men towards women?

ANSWER
MINISTER OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT 
(SHRIMATI SMRITI ZUBIN IRANI)

(a) to (d)   A Statement is laid on the Table of the House.

STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO LOK SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO.392 for 19.07.2019 BY SRI RAHUL RAMESH SHEWALE AND SRI BHARTRUHARI MAHTAB REGARDING ‘HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORKPLACES’

As above
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