Govt steps in to look into issues arising from #MeToo

• The first thing to do is naming and shaming these monsters.

• According to a source, the government will appoint a “fact-finding commission which will hold public hearings.

• Women survivors can also offer testimony to the panel. Subsequently, the panel will identify causes and consequences of the pervasive nature of sexual harassment at workplace that could also lead to changes in the law.

Government needs to intervene

• Under the Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act, (Prevention,Prohibition, and Redressal) 2013.

• It is compulsory for any organisation with 10 or more employees to set up an internal complaints committee (ICC) for addressing complaints of sexual harassment.
• The committee has powers similar to that of a civil court and have to complete its inquiry within 90 days.

• To ensure that companies implement the law, the government made it mandatory according to a notification in July for companies to disclose whether they have constituted an ICC to probe such allegations.

• Activists and women’s rights groups issued a statement expressing solidarity with those who have come out with their stories.

• The statement said, “While there is an urgent need to put the redressal mechanisms in place at every workplace, it is equally important that survivors and complainants are actively supported in their quest for justice”.

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Mains Paper 1: Social issues | Women empowerment

Prelims level: MeToo movement

Mains level: Less reporting of sexual harassment cases and need of better mechanisms to deal with such cases

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