Government of India has enacted the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and Criminal Law Amendment Act, 2013 with the objective to provide safe and secure workplace environment to women.
As per the National Crime Records Bureau data, 57 and 119 cases of sexual harassment at workplace were reported under section 509 IPC in the year 2014 and 2015 respectively. This increase in number shows that more and more women are coming forward to seek police assistance in such cases and are not suffering in silence. For reasons behind sexual harassment of women at workplace socio-culture mindset which is an outcome of deeply rooted patriarchal social constructs is the major reason.
The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 mandates constitution of Internal Complaint Committee (ICC) in all workplace whether public or private. A woman has the right to submit her complaint directly to the Internal Complaints Committee so constituted. In case internal complaint committee is not constituted in any organisation than the complaint could be made to Local Complaints Committee constituted at district level.
This information was given by the Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi in reply to a question in the Lok Sabha today.