Panel constituted to look into allegations of sexual harassment in Health deptt

Jammu and Kashmir govt reconstitutes complaint committee on sexual harassment of women

Health and Medical Education department has constituted its first Supreme Court mandated Committee meant to prevent sexual harassment at workplace and redress complaints of this nature.

Financial Commissioner Health and Medical Education (H&ME), Atal Dulloo, today issued an order constituting complaint committee under Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition And Redressal) Act 2013, following Vishaka guidelines issued by Supreme Court earlier. Dulloo called the committee ‘a step towards ensuring safety of women’. He said the committee will be an active one and ensure that ‘no complainant goes unheard’.

The four member committee will have Satvir Kaur Sudan, Director

General Personnel and Security, H&ME as chairperson, Prof Samia Rashid Principal GMC Srinagar and Dr Renu Sharma director health services Jammu as members. The name of the fourth member has not been finalized yet and the power to co-opt this member has been delegated to the chairperson.

The committee, the order states, will register and inquire into and dispose the complaints, if any, of sexual harassment against women employees of H&ME department and its sub-ordinate offices.

The Act, under which the committee has been constituted mandates every department to ensure that women are able to exercise their right to work and work with dignity. However, a health official said that health department had not constituted any such committee till date resulting in distress to female employees who wished to get their grievances regarding sexual harassment in the department redressed. The official said that the committee was constituted today after a female employee highlighted the lacunae and sought redress of her complaint against a senior employee.

The committee has been directed to submit quarterly reports to the Government detailing the number of complaints registered and the action taken. It will also submit a detailed report on each complaint received against any employee in the department and its subordinate departments.