Asked October 18, 2016

Sexual Harassment, and victimisation by employer

  • 1 Answer

I am working in a private limited company and I had complained about sexual harassment at workplace against my incharge. The employer constituted an ICC which was not as per the law, neither the report of the committee was given to me. Now as a punishment the employer has issued a transfer letter to different department. On my complaint the state women commission has also found that ICC was not as per the law. They also found that the transfer letter issued is an act of victimization and vengeance. But still my employer is hell bent on my transfer. With this transfer my career will be finished because the skill set is totally different from my experience till date. My Queries: 1.Can i obtain an interim stay from court on this transfer. 2. If yes, how much time it will take to get a stay. 3. Or is their any other legal course with me.

Answer 1

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Sammanika Rawat

Dear Mam

We are sorry to hear your problem. We are glad that you took action against sexual harassment and have still been fighting against this societal crime. For the benefit of other women out there who have been suffering from similar circumstances, we would like to tell them that 'Right to work with dignity' is our Fundamental Right guaranteed by the Constitution. Unfair and unreasonable discrimination in any manner is a violation of the Right to Equality. The Sexual Harassment law has been laid down by the legislation to minimise discrimination towards women at their workplace. Unless a women gets a safe and healthy environment to work; she shall be considered to be discriminated among men.

The law clearly states that private employers have to provide the guidelines for prohibition of sexual harassment in their Standing Orders as per the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946. The law mandates an employer to ensure healthy condition to prevent hostile environment against women. Here the onus is on the employer to inform the appropriate government about any such complaint. It is the legal responsibility of the employer to follow the law. Ignorance of law is no excuse and hence severely punishable. It is the legal responsibility of the employer to ensure that the victim is not traumatised any further. Your employer has completely ignored the law by not performing the ICC as per the law. The law says that the victim must be given an option to seek her own transfer or of the culprit. It is the victim who gets to decide and not the employer. He cannot enforce his decision of transferring you. There are multiple violations of the law by your employer and hence we are glad to tell you that you are eligible for relief from the court of law along with compensation. Not sharing the ICC report is also one such violation. Hence you can very well approach the court seeking for a stay order depending upon the date of your transfer.

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