Modi Government constituted a Group of Ministers (GoM) to examine the existing legal and institutional frameworks for dealing with matters of sexual harassment of women at the workplace. The GoM will recommend action required for effective implementation of the existing provisions, as well as for strengthening the existing legal and institutional frameworks for addressing issues related to sexual harassment at workplace.
In many ways the ongoing #metoo campaign had brought to fore a sea of complaints that women had suffered and helplessly chose to live with them without raising their voice then and there.
The Group of Ministers has been constituted in view of the felt need for broader consultation on this issue, from the point of view of developing appropriate recommendations and laying down a comprehensive plan of action and for ensuring its time bound implementation.
Salient features o Group of Ministers on empowering women at workplace
GoM is chaired by the Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
Its Members are: Nitin Gadkari, Minister, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation, and Ministry of Shipping.
Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister, Ministry of Defence.
Maneka Sanjay Gandhi, Minister, Ministry of Women & Child Development
The Government is committed to ensure the safety and dignity of women in the workforce. The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act is the key legislation for preventing and protecting women against sexual harassment in the workplace and to ensure effective redressal of complaints of sexual harassment.
The Ministry of Women & Child Development has also launched an Electronic Complaints Box that enables women, irrespective of their work status, to raise their voice against sexual harassment at workplace. Once a complaint is submitted to the ‘SHe-Box’, it is directly sent to the concerned authority having jurisdiction to take action into the matter. A mechanism will be put in place to regularly monitor the action taken on the complaints.
The Group of Ministers will, within 3 months of its constitution, examine the existing provisions for the safety of women, including those mentioned above, and recommend further measures required to strengthen and make them more effective.