Punishable u/s 354-A of the Indian Penal Code
- A man committing any of the following acts—
- physical contact and advances involving unwelcome and explicit sexual overtures; or
- a demand or request for sexual favours; or
- showing pornography against the will of a woman; or
- making sexually coloured remarks, shall be guilty of the offence of sexual harassment.
- Any man who commits the offence specified in clause (i) or clause (ii) or clause (iii) of sub-section (1) shall be punished with rigorous imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.
- Any man who commits the offence specified in clause (iv) of sub-section (1) shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine, or with both.
- Sexual harassment of the nature of unwelcome physical contact and advances or a demand or request for sexual favors or showing pornography
Punishment: Upto 3 years or Fine or Both
- Sexual harassment of the nature of making a sexually colored remark
Punishment: Upto 1 year or Fine or Both
What constitutes Sexual Harassment?
Harassment in a workplace, professional or social situation, involving the making of unwanted sexual advances, favors, or obscene remarks is considered sexual harassment. According to Vishaka Guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court of India, sexual harassment includes any unwanted sexual behavior whether directly or impliedly.
- Physical contact and initiatives.
- Sexual demands and favors.
- Showing pornography forcibly.
- Sexual remarks.
- Unusual and sexual behavior.
What does not constitute sexual harassment?
All offensive behavior does not always amount to sexual harassment. That particular act must be obscene and unjustified. It should contain a sexual element.
First Information Report (FIR)
It is basically a complaint document and the first step towards the criminal process. If you have faced sexual harassment, then your first step should be filing an FIR in a local police station. Your statement should be recorded in a language that you can understand. If it is not possible, then ask the officer to translate it for you. You should emphasize each and every detail which is being mentioned in the statement.
5 things to know about sexual harassment at workplace laws.
- Women are covered under this Act if you are an employee whether part-time, full time or intern. It even protects those women who are visiting on a regular, ad hoc, or daily wage basis. As per section 2(a) (i), an aggrieved woman means a woman whether employed or not, who alleges to have been subjugated by sexual harassment.
- Inappropriate behavior should be recognized as soon as possible and it should not be tolerated.
- A complaint can be filed within three months from the date of offense. If you are no able to lodge a complaint due to some problems, then the local committee or ICC can extend the time limit, in writing.
- In case, the aggrieved woman is not able to file a complaint due to mental or physical injury, then her legal heir or any such person can lodge on her behalf.
- A request can be made for leave or transfer to a different branch, in accordance with Section 12 of the Act.
- The Internal committee can deduct the salary of the accused if an offense is proved.
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Gupta & Associates offers criminal defense services in Delhi/NCR. We provide legal advice in sexual assault matters. Contact our criminal law expert Mr. Kushal Gupta for a free consultation.
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