Published: 26th November 2022
Address any pending sexual harassment complaint before December 9: UGC tells institutes
This is in line with a Special Drive being conducted by the Ministry of Education to address the issue of sexual harassment of women in the workplace
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has directed higher educational institutions across India to undertake a Special Drive to review any pending cases of sexual harassment on their campuses and take appropriate action before December 9, 2022.
In a circular addressed to the vice-chancellors of all universities and the principals of colleges and institutions, UGC Secretary Rajnish Jain instructed educational institutions to conduct sensitisation workshops in order to raise awareness about the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act 2013. The deadline set by the UGC to address any pending cases of sexual harassment at the institutions, December 9, is a nod to the date on which this Act was notified in 2013.
Apart from the special drive, which is to be conducted by the Internal Complaints Committee of the institutes, UGC had also asked educational institutions to observe November 25 as the International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women. Also, a Discrimination Against Women Pakhwada is being conducted from November 25 to December 9, said the UGC. The institutes have been asked to send details of the activities conducted by them in connection with this circular to the Gender Sensitisation Division of the UGC before December 11.
Referring to the UGC (Prevention Prohibition and Redressal of Sexual Harassment of women employees and students in Higher Educational Institutions) Regulations, 2015, the UGC said that the responsibilities of the educational institutions in this matter, and procedures for registering and addressing any complaints have been spelt out for the institutes.