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‘Can’t tolerate inaction in sexual harassment case’
Holding that inaction in sexual harassment cases will wane the public faith in the system, the Madras High Court directed the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre Facility, Kalpakkam, to complete the probe into a sexual harassment allegation levelled by a woman employee within six weeks
Justice SM Subramaniam passed the direction on a plea moved by the woman seeking a direction to the research facility to initiate action against a senior officer for sexually harassing her at the workplace.
The petitioner also challenged the research facility’s decision to constitute a third committee to probe the sexual harassment allegation despite a second committee having completed the probe.
On hearing the submission, the judge stated that the Supreme Court in unequivocal terms held that the protection of women in the workplace is of paramount importance and swift actions by following the procedures are imminent.
“Thus, any lapses in this regard on the part of the administration must also be viewed seriously,” the judge ruled.
The HC further pointed out that while dealing with such allegations, the authorities are expected to be more vigilant and any lapses in this regard must be viewed seriously.
The Central government standing counsel K Venkataswamy Babu submitted that the second committee was not in consonance with the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013.
On recording the submission, the judge directed the authorities to form a third committee and probe the complaint expeditiously.