“You won’t go to a temple wearing a skirt, will you? Or to a funeral dressed in a bride’s gown? Then why won’t you dress and behave appropriately at your workplace?” asked Dr Amita Prasad, Principal Secretary to the Department of Women and Child Development.
She was speaking at a seminar on laws against sexual harassment at the workplace, in the city on Thursday. She stressed the need to dress and behave appropriately at the workplace. “(The definition of) appropriate behaviour may be different for different people but certain norms should be followed.”
She said the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 is a big step towards ensuring women’s safety and added that the state government has started taking steps to implement the Act effectively. “We have sent out over 600 letters and emails to various organisations asking them to provide details about the internal complaints committee that needs to be set up,” she said.
She also said sexual harassment shouldn’t be gender specific, though she accepted that women are more vulnerable because of socio-cultural ethos. “There are cases registered where men are victims too. We should look at making the workplace safe for everybody. Organisations should aim at zero tolerance and zero occurrence of sexual harassment.”