Human Capital Development
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If group leader admonish subordinate for any laxity, lethargy or unresponsiveness shown towards assigned duty OR instruct them to behave in discipline and order and follow code of conduct OR follow-up subordinate to know the progress in the task assigned – and if subordinate feel offended due to all these activities of his/her boss and feel mentally harassed, tell me how far this is true and acceptable as now a days people do carry very wrong notions about this terms “mental harassment” which has really become a buzz word. Would be glad if any one can throw light on this issue and clarify that “What activities of the group leader cannot be classified as mental harassment?”

Hi rjb,
Please click the following link for an excellent ppt on "Psychological Harrasment at workplace".
It would give you a fair amount of idea what constitutes mental harrasment in workplace. Hope this works for you.

Thanks for your prompt attention and reply.
I did check this PPT by Dr Sharita K Shah.
Except in slide 15 with heading “exceptions” which says that situation may be unpleasant for an employee but the act of the group leader cannot be classified as mental harassment. The whole presentation is about what is mental harassment but I am interested to know what is not mental harassment even though employee may feel or believe that it is in boss-subordinate relationship, hope you get my point. Do reply please as lot of misunderstanding and mis concepts prevail on this sensitive issue.


The examples which you have mentioned in your mail “If group leader admonish subordinate for any laxity, lethargy or unresponsiveness shown towards assigned duty OR instruct them to behave in discipline and order and follow code of conduct OR follow-up subordinate to know the progress in the task assigned,” won't come under mental harassment provided they are exercised without abuse and discrimination.

The following points would not come under mental harassment:

Organizational Policies - If a group leader exercises his right to implement organization’s policies, without abuse and discrimination. For e.g. warning a junior for taking longer break hours, or for coming late for work without informing his/her senior (even though short leave are allowed) provided it should not be abusive or discriminatory.

Working conditions – If working conditions are difficult which are justified that does not constitute harassment. For e.g. XYZ company works in two shifts i.e. morning and evening shifts (company provides cab facilities to employees for both shifts). In XYZ Company, there is pre-condition before any selection, which is that the candidate should be ready to work for evening shifts. After joining, when management informs them of their evening shifts, it is common to hear excuses like my house is too far (even when they travel by cab), I reach too late in the night, or my mom or dad don’t approve of it etc. etc. In this case, the condition of evening shift is already specified to the candidate before joining, and if management repeatedly asks employee to join the evening shift, it would not constitute harassment.

Stress at work: Stress at work does due to several factors such as overwork, change in organization’s structure, transfer etc. does not constitute harassment.



Dear Mr. Rjb,
The points you mentioned won't comes under mental harrasment. One thing the leader / superior / HOD should keep in thier mind is that they are also reached this stage from the junior position.
The second important point is that until the relationship, understanding and the alzebra matches the team member won't feel that any thing discussed even in an angry and harsh mode may not be felt as harrasment and could be taken as an advise, in this context wants to bring to your notice is that the relationship makes lot of difference.
Once the relationship is not cordial then the superior should be very careful, he should talk to the team member in the presence of the third person, always the concerns should be in black and white. The superior should be very careful if it is in the case of female employee. The superior should be honest, eithical in dealing with the employees failing which the employee feels harasment and victimization. If the superiod wants to take action against erring employee it is better to identify a peer from the other department / section and give the charge to suggest an action by looking in to the failures of his team member so that it will be very acceptable and legally withstands.
Fianally the superior should extend a fatherly treatment to his team members and should not forget to build a file on each employee to enable yourself to take a right decision.
regards - kameswarao

Thank you very much for your kind clarification. Now a days it is observed very frequently that subordinates do not like their boss insisting them to work and behave in discipline and order at work place and when he does that, they feel offended and find it bad in taste and even complain against their boss to higher management. And you know this is democracy, head counts! In this and situation like this middle management become "sandwich".
Thanks again for taking time for replying dear Rashee & Kameswarao

I have been issued chargesheets in 2008 on the basis of C.D.A. Rules of 1975,while under the RTI Act,my employers states that Rules of 2003 are in force since 2003.
Does application of wrong Rules not constitute mental harassment?

I would like to inform you about the behavior of my manager towards me,
From last one month, I am going through a mental harassment by him,
Because he use to threatened me by saying that I can finish your carrier in a minute,
Last time he shouted over me in front of all the team members.
Today also I missed my bus by 5 mins
I immediately I have try alternate option to reach the office I reached here arouns 9:40
Again he showed me the same behavior he told PF department to extend my relieving date.
So it’s a humble request please let me know what to do as he is trying his best that I loose my
new job and current job .

There is almost nothing you can do against a bad boss as per prevailing laws in India. I complained to human rights commission,etc,they won’t interfere.
Dear All,
I am an Life Insurance Marketing Professional working for one private Life Insurance Company at Hyderabad( India). Is there any legal protection for Marketing professionals of Pvt. Life Insurance Companies Employees.Can you please guide in this regard.
Venkateswarlu Vempati

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