nathrao
3105

Mr Khursheed,

I disagree that case will be decided in his favour.Case will go against him based on what has been written itself.

Coupled with his apology,case can go against.

Secondly intention is unimportant in sexual harassment cases.

Compromise is the only way out.

Laws against harassment are favourable to ladies and this law is passed by Honble Parliament.Social and other circumstances necessitated this favourable law.

Vishakha Judgement has now been converted into statutary law.

Dowry Act was misused and many suffered and now there is a mental process to stop unjust suffering of an innocent male.

Similarly when Harassment Act provisions are misused by a bigger section of ladies,probably changes will take place.

Right now where males and females work together,one has to ensure distance and public interactions in a manner which is acceptable.

Once you take liberties like side hug,selfies,you are giving chance to the party to raise harassment charges.

I am sure in this case person had no intentions of harassment and was being normal and friendly.

Company culture also is relevant in this case.

But to my mind he needs to understand lady had kept in mind the side hugs and complained about it.Probably she never liked it or used it as a convenient weapon at time of convenience.

But law is in her favour.

Compromise and sort issue out.Exit from company is one way to avoid adverse fallout.

Best source of legal advice is from a lawyer.

We can only guide with best of intentions and without any bias.

From India, Pune
Dear Mr N. Ahuja,

First of all let me demonstrate my greetings to you that you can easily win this case. Now read my opinion given below:

1. SHWW (PPR) Act, 2013 - Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2013 does not straight away admits that complainant is true and the accused is guilty.

2. The Act provides under Section 4 that there has to be in place an Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) in every organization, whether government or private. The ICC is to be headed by a woman employee of senior rank. The Committee must consist of minimum four members as under:
(i) Chairperson
(ii) Two woman members of same office committed to social cause for women,
(iii) One external member preferably from an NGO or person familiar with issues of sexual harassment. For more details read my Blog on this topic at cmlalsrivastava.blogspot.in

3. In view of above, please assure yourself that first complaint was to be dealt by ICC, which was required to be duly notified in your office through an office order/circular. If the first Committee was not duly notified ICC, then it has no legal standing under the Act. You have to give details about it. Moreover what kind of apology was tendered by you? And what warning letter was issued to you? You have to give details of these two documents.

4. Section 9 provides that a complaint is to made within three months. Please check this aspect.

5. Section 12 of the Act does not prescribe that you should be sent on leave. Leave is tobe granted the aggrieved woman, no the the accused person

6.

From India, New Delhi
nathrao
3105

The above post is again informative.
But one should remember that whatever is written and given as an apology becomes evidence to great extent.
Warning letter was given and not contested.
Three month period can be waived in case lady gives adequate reasons.
The laws favour women in this case and it is never wise to challenge when there is evidence of touching(side hugs).
Selfies can also go against the male.
Whatever technical loopholes are there,the case is not a win win situation where male will be scot free.
Some office co worker put his mobile on speaker mode to let the lady hear conversation,who knows next which witness will pop up.
Even if acquitted the stain will remain and will be an Achilles heel for the gentleman concerned.
However I personally wish that things work out fine for the original poster and matters get resolved.

From India, Pune
Dear members,
The poster had uploaded his long post on 12-May-2016. The last line of the post reads "Any suggestions?" Considering the gravity of the post, seniors have given their views. In the course of discussion, cross-section of views emerged. Nevertheless, the poster has gone incommunicado after the first post. Four days passed but he/she is yet to find time to acknowledge the valuable views expressed by seniors. Therefore, prudence on our part demands waiting for N Ahuja's second post. Unless he/she clarifies, there is not point in providing one-sided solutions.
For N Ahuja: - Propriety demands acknowledgement of the views provided by others. This was not even your problem your friend's. To serve the interest of your friend, seniors have spent their valuable time selflessly. Can we expect graciousness from your side please?
Thanks,
Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Dear Mr Ahuja

Due to technical problem the entire matter could not be typed in my previous reply. Please read further:

6. Section 12 of the Act prescribes to grant leave to the aggrieve woman, not the accused employee. Hence the action of Hr to send you on leave is not in accordance with law.

7. ICC, before taking up complaint for inquiry, has to inform the Complainant about the provision of conciliation given in Section 10 of the Act. However, conciliation will be resorted to if complainant gives a consent for it. Please note that you don’t have to admit any allegation, but always be firm to deny all these allegations.

8. ICC, as per rules, has to act upon the complaint within a period of seven days and complete the inquiry within a period of 90 days as given in Section 11 of the Act.

9. ICC has to make inquiry in accordance with service rules of the company/organization, in its absence by following the principles of Natural Justice and Rules.

10. You can easily win your case, prove that complaint is false and motivated. After completion of inquiry and getting its report, you can file a criminal case of defamation against the complainant.

11. Read my blog for details on the topic of ICC at, cmlalsrivastava.blogspot.in

12. You are sure to win your case.

You can contact me for guidance and advice at srivastavacmlal@gmail.com
09818680671

From India, New Delhi
Mr. Ahuja,
Sexual harassment or not, but your description, in itself speaks about your over-indulgence on developing closeness of relationship with the opposite sex with no close familiarity that too when you had been found to be critical about his domestic affairs by speaking bad words about her husband. With howsoever style you had been hugging her by side or otherwise, you had created an open evidence against yourself in the eyes of other colleagues, irrespective of whether she reacted or not. You should know that most of the colleagues just try to enjoy in such a bad situation with any colleague and become witness to corroborate her statement.
Please note, provisions on the issue being so stringent, the law tilts much more on her side.
So, try to wriggle out of such a situation for the present by being apologetic to her and avoid any over-indulgence in relationship with any female colleague for the future.

From India, Delhi
Dear N Ahuja,
Member after member is providing his valuable advice. However, it could tantamount to barking up wrong tree because of your non-communication. Therefore, I am closing this thread temporarily. When you wish to respond, you may send me private message. On receipt of your message, the thread will be opened.
For Learned Members: - You may give your valuable replies to some other needy member or a poster who has given clarifying post to his/her first post.
Thanks,
Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Dear Mr Ahuja

I wish to welcome you with an assurance that you can win you case. Do not be disheartened or discouraged by some opinions that suggest resigning from the job etc. I give below the expert opinion for your knowledge and revival of your self confidence:

1. Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2012 enjoins upon every employer vide Section 4 to constitute an ICC (Internal Complaints Committee) to deal with complaints of sexual harassment. The ICC must have minimum four members.

2. Out of the minimum four members, one member must be an external member either from an NGO or a person familiar the issues of sexual harassment. This is mandatory. Read my article on this topic at cmlalsrivastava.blogspot.in for detailed knowledge.

3. It is only the ICC that can handle the complaint and make an inquiry. Please check compliance of these provisions of law in your organization.

4. Whether the first committee that heard the complaint against you was an ICC, if not, its proceedings are null and void.

5. Please note that you don’t have to admit the allegations at any stage. Always deny the allegations firmly. The circumstances of your case show that the case has been planted against you.

6. Section 12 of the Act prescribes to grant leave to the aggrieve woman, not the accused employee. Hence the action of Hr to send you on leave is not in accordance with law.

7. ICC, before taking up complaint for inquiry, has to inform the Complainant about the provision of conciliation given in Section 10 of the Act. However, conciliation will be resorted to if complainant gives a consent for it. Please note that you don’t have to admit any allegation, but always be firm to deny all these allegations.

8. ICC, as per rules, has to act upon the complaint within a period of seven days and complete the inquiry within a period of 90 days as given in Section 11 of the Act.

9. ICC has to make inquiry in accordance with service rules of the company/organization, in its absence by following the principles of Natural Justice and Rules.

10. You can easily win your case, prove that complaint is false and motivated. After completion of inquiry and getting its report, you can file a criminal case of defamation against the complainant.

You can contact me for guidance and advice at srivastavacmlal@gmail.com
09818680671

From India, New Delhi
Dear Mr Ahuja,
Clearly as most of the respondents have stated that your friend has very little chance to vindicate himself.The case shall go against him.Atleast I feel so.But I see a glimmer of hope before your friend puts in his papers or is kicked out.He used to give her a side hug , take selfie without her ever getting offended means the two were on friendly terms . The hell was let loose because , rather foolishly , your hriend used slang language for her husband.Therefore I suggest that your friend meet her directly and offer unconditional apology and request her to take back charges levied.He has already learnt a lesson of his life and the lady in question might agree !

From India, New Delhi

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