Dear Mr Gurjar,

The Constitution of India prohibits discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth.

This is guaranteed as a Fundamental Right to the Citizens of India. Article 14 and Article 15 of the Constitution specifically address this.

Article 14 of the Constitution of India states "14. The State shall not deny to any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India."

Article 15 (1) of the Constitution of India states "15. (1) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them."

Further the Directive Principles of State Policy in the Constitution elaborate further in Article 39, which states "The State shall, in particular, direct its policy

towards securing - (a) that the citizens, men and women equally, have the right to an adequate means of livelihood; .........."

You cannot have an explicitly stated policy which negatively discriminates against women being recruited into an organisation.


Raju Bhatnagar

From India, Bangalore
Raju, That is a right conferred by the state. Not a private agency. Please recheck the same. Reg,
From United States, Daphne
I fully agree with you.
However, your response indicates that you aren't understanding the question correctly. You are talking of ERA which applies only if you have male and female employees. We are talking about not having any employees AS A POLICY. And not, AS A PRACTICE...
There are many companies that don't employ women AS A PRACTICE. So, the question is slightly different.
As for the cost of lawsuits, I think you need to really research the cost of that before you comment.

From United States, Daphne
Dear Mr Gurjar,
I am not sure I understand your comment about this being a right conferred by the State and not by a Private agency.
The Constitution applies to both State and Private agencies. It is, in fact a right that is conferred on a citizen.
Maybe if you elaborate on the response you have posted I could offer a more specific response.
Raju Bhatnagar

From India, Bangalore
Whether policy or practice or any other guise - you cannot make any discrimination against women during recruitment- irrespective of the existing gender mix (or lack of it) of your existing workforce or the color of walls in your office.

Reproducing Section 5 (Note that it does not exclude any policy, practice, gender mix or whatever we can dream of):

"5. No discrimination to be made while recruiting men and women workers. -- On and from the commencement of this Act, no employer shall, while making recruitment for the same work or work of a similar nature, 2 [or in any condition of service subsequent to recruitment such as promotions, training or transfer], make any discrimination against women except where the employment of women in such work is prohibited or restricted by or under any law for the time being in force:

Provided that the provisions of this section shall not affect any priority or reservation for scheduled castes or scheduled tribes, ex-servicemen, retrenched employees of any other class or category of persons in the matter of recruitment to the posts in an establishment or employment."

Source: <link fixed>

And let us not get into what you or I should research before posting a comment. Let us leave that to admins/mods.

From India, Delhi
@Rajubhatnagar Constitution Art 14 and 15 are about discrimination by "State" - it means government can't discriminate. It does not say anything about whether private entities can or cannot discriminate.
From India, Delhi
We are in 21st century...and thoughts on women employment seems to be medieval period....same like sati practice...if widow lives, there will be social the practice of sati....

From India, Bhiwani
Dear all,

I am not a HR person or an expert on the laws in India (As I am based in the UK for the past 4 decades). I am rather surprised that such a question was raised without giving sufficient background and people are airing their views without asking for a specific scenario.

In the UK, discrimination based on sex, among other things, is illegal. I searched the web and have given a couple of links.

Men only: Bristol recruitment agency in trouble for sexual discrimination | Bristol Post <link updated to site home> ( Search On Cite | Search On Google ) <link fixed>

India also is a signatory to Human Rights Convensions and I presume it also will legislate specific laws if it has not done so. I read an interesting case at Arati Durgaram Gavandi vs Mrs.Shakuntala A. Mudbidri For ... on 6 October, 2008 that throws light on Sexual Discrimination at the workplace. We Indians are meek when it comes to using the law to establish our rights, which is slowly changing for the good.

Please forgive me, if I have touched on anyone's sensitive nerves.

From United Kingdom
Dear friends,

I am afraid whether the discussion tends to fall by the way-side on account of the arguments and counter-arguments being exchanged by the Questioner and other learned members having legal perspective on the question and at times among the same set of people with legal perspective themselves. To Bodhisutra whose argument firmly rests on the provisions of the Equal Remuneration Act,1976 the argument of RajuBhatnagar stemming up from the Constitution of India is unteneble and hence unacceptable. The object of the ER Act1976 as stated in its preamble is to provide for the PAYMENT OF EQUAL REMUNERATION to men and women and for the prevention of discrimination on the ground of sex against women in the matter of employment and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.Though Bodhisurta's argument based on Sec.5 of the Act is correct and appreciable, unfortunately no notification by the Central Govt. so far of the establishments or employments in which the extent of employment of women can be recommended by the Advisory Committee u/s 6(1). Regarding Bhatnagar's argument based on the Constitutional provisions, it is a known position that no writ would lie against a private person not charged with any public duty. Therefore, the correct approach to the question which appears to me would be based on social norms. The under-tone of the question is whether such an explicit policy of "No- Lady employees - for the organization" would be generally acceptable.When Walt Whitman wrote a poem about' love '( sorry to have forgotten the title), the line first penned by him was " We, man and woman, let us love one another or die ". On a deeper contemplation of the actual meaning he wanted to convey, he later modified the line as - " We man and woman, let us love one another AND die ". Hence I reiterate my earlier point that such a policy is totally undesireable even in the absence of legal restrictions.

From India, Salem
No sensitive nerves touched Simhan... It was just a legal clarification and Umakanthan has given the clarification.
Thanks a lot.
I am not a supporter of this myself, but as a management consultant, I need to also understand if my understanding of the law is correct. Hence, the question.

From United States, Daphne

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