The prevalence of sexual harassment at workplaces in India can mostly be attributed to the lack of proper grievance redressal system, which gives perpetrators the confidence to carry forth their atrocious acts without the fear of being reprimanded.
This is the very reason why many women, despite facing harassment on multiple occasions, refuse to come forward.
In an attempt to tackle this issue, the Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) has launched an online complaint portal, SHe-Box (Sexual Harassment electronic box). The portal can be accessed by women working in the government, as well as the private sector.
Launched by Union minister Maneka Gandhi on Tuesday, the provision will be hosted on the website of the WCD ministry.
Once a complaint is filed, it will be sent to the Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) of the concerned organisation, and the complainant, as well as WCD, can monitor the progress of the inquiry.
As per the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013, it is mandatory for every organisation, with 10 or more employees, to ordain an ICC to address workplace harassment complaints.
“The ministry had earlier launched a web page for government employees, which has now been extended to women in the private sector,” said Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi.
SHe-box intends to put an end to the callous attitude with which workplace sexual harassment has been treated through the ages, and seeks to ensure “effective implementation” of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013.