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Bhabha Atomic Research Centre facility directed to form new ICC to probe sexual harassment plaint  

The order was issued while allowing a petition filed by the woman staff who complained of sexual harassment by a colleague in the facility in 2013.

Published: 15th December 2021 04:33 AM  |   Last Updated: 15th December 2021 04:33 AM   |  A+A-

Madras High Court

Madras High Court

By Express News Service

CHENNAI:  The Madras High Court has directed the Director of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre facility at Kalpakkam to constitute a fresh panel within a week and complete the inquiry into the sexual harassment of a woman staff within six weeks.

Justice SM Subramaniam, in a recent order, said the fresh committee should be constituted in accordance with section 4 of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and it should take into account the report already submitted by the second committee. If necessary, further evidences can be taken.

The respondents including the Secretary for Department of Atomic Energy and the Chairman of Atomic Energy Commission were directed to initiate all further actions expeditiously both under the Criminal Law and the Service Law as the case may be as applicable.

The order was issued while allowing a petition filed by the woman staff who complained of sexual harassment by a colleague in the facility in 2013. The first internal complaints committee (ICC) constituted to inquire the matter did not carry out the task while the second committee’s report was not accepted by the authorities saying the panel was not formed by following section 4 of the Act.

She approached the court seeking orders to initiate action against the accused as per the report of the second committee.Justice Subramaniam said that an amount of sensitivity shown by the administration would be of paramount importance and in the event of not showing any sensitivity, undoubtedly, it is taken as if the issue is not treated in accordance with the provisions of the Act. Further, committing an act of dereliction is certainly a misconduct or an offence.

While dealing with such allegations, the authorities are expected to be more vigilant and cautious and any lapses in this regard must be viewed seriously, he noted.



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