Sexual harassment at the workplace includes any unwelcome behavior or act of sexual conduct in nature. Sexual harassment at the workplace is an extension of violence in everyday life. It is discriminatory and exploitative as it affects women’s right to life and livelihood. It is a violation of a woman’s fundamental rights to equality as per Articles 14 and 15 and her right to live with dignity enshrined in Article 21 of the Constitution of India. Sexual harassment can be distinguished on two bases, one of them is quid pro quo in which a woman gets sexually harassed in exchange of work benefits and sexual favors this also leads to some retaliatory actions such as demotion and making her work under challenging conditions. Another is a ‘hostile working environment,’ which imposes a duty on an employer to provide the worker with a positive working environment and prohibits sexist graffiti, sexual remarks showing pornography, and brushing against women employees. Sabkuch Legal has empaneled some of the best lawyers having in-depth knowledge of Sexual harassment cases at the workplace or filing of sexual harassment complaints /cases.
The ”workplace “ also includes any place visited by the employee arising out of or during the course of employment including the transportation provided by the employer undertaking such a journey.
An organization needs to adhere to certain compliances, which are mandatory in the eyes of the law. Every employer should make sure that the compliance prescribed under the Prevention of Sexual Harassment Act is followed in his/her organization.
The punishment prescribed for non-compliance under the Sexual Harassment Act is fine up to Rs. 1,00,000/- or cancellation of license to carry out the business/service by the organization might ultimately lead to defamation, attacking the name and goodwill of the organization.
If you are an individual or a person who works in an organization and you face any of the act which might amount to sexual harassment, and you need to discuss regarding it, or you wish to file a sexual harassment complaint, feel free to reach out us as we have the best lawyers. They would help you deal with the situation in the best possible way.
Prevention of Sexual Harassment Act applicable to which business?
POSH applies to every workplace, establishment, company, or organization with more than ten employees. It includes all forms of business like a firm, shop, restaurant, movie theatre, or a multi-national company. POSH will be applicable even in situations where there are only male employees in the organization.
What are the Penalties for non-compliance of provisions of the Act?
An employer will be liable to a fine of Rs 50,000 in case of violation of his duties under the Act and in case of subsequent breaches the amount of fine will be double together with a penalty in the form of cancelation of his license, withdrawal or non-withdrawal of the registration required for carrying out his activity.
How to form an Internal Complaints Committee?
The ICC will be a 4-member committee under the Chairpersonship of a senior woman employee. It will include two members from amongst the employees, preferably committed to the cause of women, or has experience in social work/legal knowledge and consists of a third- party member (NGO, etc.).
What is the Procedure for filing complaints?
A complaint of sexual harassment can be filed within a time limit of 3 months. The time limit may be extended to another three months if the woman can prove that grave circumstances prevented her from doing the same. The Complaint can be filed with ICC of the Company or the HR department of the Company.