NOW , IT IS MANDATORY TO INCLUDE A STATEMENT IN BOARD’S REPORT THAT COMPANY HAS COMPLIED THE PROVISION REGARDING  CONSTITUTION OF INTERNAL COMPLAINTS COMMITTEE UNDER THE SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORK PLACE (PREVENTION,  PROHIBITION AND REDRESSAL) ACT,  2013

NOW , IT IS MANDATORY TO INCLUDE A STATEMENT IN BOARD’S REPORT THAT COMPANY HAS COMPLIED THE PROVISION REGARDING  CONSTITUTION OF INTERNAL COMPLAINTS COMMITTEE UNDER THE SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORK PLACE (PREVENTION,  PROHIBITION AND REDRESSAL) ACT,  2013

ORIGIN OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT WORK PLACE ACT 2013

Sexual Harassment of Women at Work Place Act 2013 has been enacted on the basis of honorable Supreme Court direction in the case of Vishaka v. State of Rajasthan.


SUPREME COURT IN VISHAKA V. STATE OF RAJASTHAN.

In this case Supreme Court of India for the first time recognized, acknowledged and explicitly defined sexual harassment as an – unwelcome sexual gesture or behavior aimed or having a tendency to outrage the modesty of woman directly or indirectly.


Defining sexual harassment as an act aimed towards gender based discrimination that affects women’s right to life and livelihood, the Supreme Court developed broad based guidelines for employers. This mandatory guidelines known as Vishaka guidelines .

VISHAKA GUIDELINES

Some of the important guidelines are:

  • The onus to provide a harassment free work environment has been laid down on the employers who  are required to take the following steps:

  • Employers must form a Complaints Committee.

  • Express prohibition of sexual harassment in any form and make the employees aware of the implications through in house communication system / posters / meetings.

  • Must include prohibition of sexual harassment with appropriate penalties against the offender in Conduct rules.

  • Prohibition of sexual harassment in the standing orders under the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946 to be included by private employers.

  • Provision of appropriate work conditions in respect of- work, leisure, health, hygiene to further ensure that there is no hostile environment towards women.

  • No woman employee should have reasonable grounds to believe that she is disadvantaged in connection with her employment.

  • Victims of sexual harassment to be given an option to seek transfer of the perpetrator or their own transfer of the perpetrator or their own transfer.

NOW IT IS MANDATORY TO INCLUDE IN THE BOARD’s REPORT

Now , it is mandatory that the Board Report must contain Disclosure Regarding a statement that company has complied the provision regarding  Constitution of Internal Complaints Committee Under the Sexual Harassment of Women at work Place (Prevention,  Prohibition and Redressal) Act,  2013  which is made mandatory by Ministry of Corporate  Affairs by 31st July,  2018 through Companies (Accounts)  Amendment Rules,  2018.

EVERY CORPORATE WHETHER LISTED OR UNLISTED OR PRIVATE OR PUBLIC  HAS TO FOLLOW MANDATORY

Every corporate whether listed or unlisted or private or public  has to take note of same while preparing their Board Report pursuant to Section 134 of companies Act,  2013  and other applicable provision and rules thereof.

APPLICABILITY

Committee is to be set up (if you employ more than 10 women employees)

It is applicable to all the companies Board’s Report for the Annual General Meeting to be held on or before 31st March 2018.

MCA TO CLARIFY WHETHER WOMEN EMPLOYEE HARASSMENT REPORT APPLIES TO SMALL COMPANIES AND OPCs?.

IN THE SAME MCA CIRCULAR DATE 31ST JULY 2018 – MCA HAS PROVIDED CHANGES IN BOARD’S REPORT FOR OPC AND SMALL COMPANIES. However , there is no mention in the new directors report for OPC & Small companies about the statement to be included about the sexual harassment of women employees.

However , the above circular uses the word  “Every corporate” which means it should also applicable to OPCs and Small companies also. Thus , MCA should clarify whether  harassment of women employees report has to be included in the director’s report of small companies & OPCs or not.

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