Tuesday, 11 December, 2018

MeToo complaints to be probed by committee of retired judges: Centre

Actor Rajat Kapoor is accused of sexual abuse Image Actor Rajat Kapoor is accused of sexual abuse
Jeannette Daniel | 13 October, 2018, 09:59

The minister for women and child development said her ministry had established itself as a safe platform to address their complaints.

The Ministry of Women and Child Development will set up a committee of four retired judges to examine complaints that have come to fore from the #MeToo India movement.

"I am proposing to set up a committee with senior judicial and legal persons as members to look into all issues emanating from the MeToo campaign", she said in an interview to PTI.

Earlier, Maneka Gandhi had said the allegations of sexual harassment against anybody, including ministers, should be taken seriously as women are often scared to speak out. Cases of sexual harassment at work must be dealt with a policy of zero tolerance.

The next step, she said, is to set up a committee that can listen to the women.

More news: Pat Riley reportedly unloaded on Tom Thibodeau

Several women journalists have come out against M J Akbar, Minister of External Affairs, accusing him of sexual misconduct.

She said when women have started talking their allegations should be taken seriously. These cases have been elephants in the rooms for the last 25 years. All the cases will be closely monitored by the ministry.

In an official statement Gandhi said that in order to ensure harassment-free workplaces covering all (all ages, full-time, part-time, public and private sector, organised or unorganised sectors etc., including domestic workers, students, apprentices, and even the women visiting an office), the government has put in place an effective legal and institutional framework in place through the 'The sexual harassment at women at workplace (prevention, prohibition and redressal) Act'2013. Complaints can be given to internal complaints committees (ICCs) or submitted through its She-Box (www.shebox.nic.in), which provides a single window access to women, irrespective of their work status to register complaints.

"I will do what I can do to help them", she said, adding that women should raise their voices.

A roaring debate has ensued on social media after Bollywood actor Tanushree Dutta levelled charges of sexual harassment on fellow actor Nana Patekar.

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