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The Supreme Court recently while deciding on the case in AURELIANO FERNANDES Vs STATE OF GOA AND OTHERS laid down directives and guidelines for all employers. It has asked for the judgment to be circulated to all governmental authorities, departments, and ministries with a view to ensure that the required compliances under the POSH Act are followed both in letter and spirit. The relevant directives under the said judgment are summarized below for your reference:

Constitution of IC should strictly be in adherence to the Act, – Please ensure your IC is constituted as per section 4 of the Sexual Harassment of Women At Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition And Redressal) Act, 2013

  1. E-mail IDs and contact numbers of the designated person(s) to be notified –

Please notify  the detailed constitution of IC members with their names, contact number, email.id  and their designation at all conspicuous places of your premises.

  1. -Process for submitting an online complaint to be notified.-

 Assist your employees to approach the Internal Complaints Committee with ease and without any embarrassment. Create a dedicated email id for PoSH , and educate your employees about the detailed procedure to submit a complaint online in case they are aggrieved and harassed. Upload the process of online submission on your website.

  1. Internal policies to be available. Information to be  updated from time to time -Ensure that your policy is available on your Companies website and your organisations portal of policies. Review the policy time to time and update it on your website and portal. For any assistance on the policy contact LexiPoSH
  1. To familiarize members of the ICCs/LCs/ICs with their duties and the manner in which an inquiry ought to be conducted-

Equip the IC members with the knowledge of the law, policy, their roles, and task. Train the IC members to handle inquiries efficiently following the due process of law. Conduct capacity building and upskilling workshops for IC members on regular basis and enhance their preparedness to handle a complaint.

  1. Regularly conduct orientation programmes, workshops, seminars, and awareness programmes to educate women employees and women’s groups about the provisions of the Act, the Rules and relevant regulations. 

Training programmes to be conducted on regular basis to educate and empower the women employees to understand their rights under the Act, and the procedure for exercising the same in case required. Lexi PoSH conducts sensitization sessions to assist the employer to keep them informed about the Act.

  1. A copy of this judgment shall be transmitted to authorities, departments & ministries to ensure the implementation of directions.

In light of this Judgement, the government authorities are more likely to scrutinize the compliance requirements rigorously. 

It is quite likely that inspections may now be carried out to ensure that employers are compliant with the requirements under the Act.

The full text of the judgment can be accessed at Link