Ensure ICC As Per POSH Act Exists In Armed Forces; Impart Gender Sensitive Awareness To Armed Personnel: Madras High Court To Centre
While dealing with a case of sexual harassment of a woman air force personnel by another air force personnel, the Madras High Court directed the Centre Government to ensure that a proper Internal Complaints Committee existed in the Armed Forces in compliance with the Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Work Act. The court also directed the Central Government to sensitise the armed personnel by imparting gender-sensitive awareness training to achieve the objectives of the legislation.
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And the Central Government is directed to ensure the proper existence of Internal Complaints Committee in the Armed Forces in accordance with the mandates of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act 2013 and to sensitise the armed personnel imparting gender sensitive awareness training to achieve its objectives. Consequently, connected miscellaneous petition is closed,” the court directed.
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The directions were issued by Justice RN Manjula after noting that the woman officer had resorted to filing a police complaint after being unsatisfied with the investigation carried out by the Air Force Authorities and after facing humiliation in the services and being threatened to withdraw the complaint
The court lamented that it was difficult to comprehend how a woman of armed forces was not
Comfortable to take up her grievance and ended up filing a police complaint
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“In this era of awareness and sensitivity, it is difficult to comprehend that a victim of a sexual offence in the Armed Forces was not comfortable enough to take up her grievance and she was looked down and pressured for having got the courage to report. If the women of the armed forces should not have courage to fight such violence, who else can have?” the court observed.
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July 25, 2023
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