The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 (14 of 2013) has come into effect, as published in the Gazette of India, dated 9th December, 2013. It is notified that the provisions of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Rules, 2013 supersede the University Ordinance XV-D, with immediate effect. The Following Act of Parliament received the assent of the President on the 22nd April, 2013, and is hereby published for general information: –
THE SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORKPLACE (PREVENTION, PROHIBITION AND REDRESSAL) ACT, 2013 (No. 14 OF 2013) [22nd April, 2013]
An Act to provide protection against sexual harassment of women at workplace and for the prevention and redressal of complaints of sexual harassment and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
WHEREAS sexual harassment results in violation of the fundamental rights of a women to equality under articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution of India and her right to life and to live with dignity under article 21 of the Constitution and right to practice any profession or to carry on any occupation, trade or business which includes a right to a safe environment free from sexual harassment.
AND WHEREAS the protection against sexual harassment and the right to work with dignity are universally recognised human rights by international conventions and instruments such as Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women, which has been ratified on 25th June, 1993 by the Government of India.
AND WHEREAS it is expedient to make provisions for giving effect to the said convention for protection of women against sexual harassment at workplace.
In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires
(A) Aggrieved woman” means-
- in relation to a workplace, a woman, of any age whether employed or not, who alleges to have been subjected to any act of sexual harassment by the respondent;
- in relation to a dwelling place or house, a woman of any age who is employed in such dwelling place or house;
(B) “Sexual harassment” includes any one or more of the following unwelcome acts behaviour (whether directly or by implication) namely: –
- physical contact and advances; or
- a demand or request for sexual favours; or
- making sexually coloured remarks; or
- showing pornography; or
- any other unwelcome physical verbal or non-verbal conduct of sexual nature;
Prevention of Sexual Harassment-
3(i) No Woman shall be subjected to sexual harassment at any workplace;
9(j) Any aggrieved women may make, in writing, a complaint of sexual harassment at workplace to the Internal Committee if so constituted, or the Local Committee, in case it is not so constituted, within a period of the three months from the date of incident and in case of a series of incidents, within a period of three month a period of three months from the date of last incident.
Provided that where such complaint cannot be made in writing, the Presiding Officer or any Member of the Internal Committee or the Chairperson or any Member of the Local Committee, as the case may be, shall render all reasonable assistance to the woman for making the complaint in writing:
Provided further that the Internal Committee or, as the case may be, the Local Committee may, for the reasons to be recorded in writing, extend the time limit no exceeding three months, if it is satisfied that the circumstances were such which prevented the woman from filing a complaint within the said period.