Parties to get notice on complaint committee for women

Parties to get notice on complaint committee for women

Swati Maliwal. AFP/FILE

All political parties here would soon get a notice from the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) seeking details on whether they have constituted an Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) to receive and act on the complaints of sexual harassment of women in their respective organisations.

DCW chief Swati Maliwal said she would send a notice to them, including to Delhi's ruling Aam Aadmi Party, saying all political parties must have ICC constituted as per provisions made in the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013.

"DCW will send notices to all political parties, including the AAP," she said.

Maliwal's assurance in this regard came in response to a question during an event organised by the Indian Women's Press Corps to debate on the issue of sexual harassment of women at workplace amid raging 'MeToo' movement.

The DCW chief welcomed the 'MeToo' campaign and said she was trying to reach out to the victims and see that they lodge formal complaints against those who subjected them to sexual harassment.

She demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should immediately sack M J Akbar as the minister of state for external affairs and order a probe into the accusations of sexual harassment against him.

"It's very shameful that Akbar continues to remain a minister of state. Prime minister should call all the women who have accused Akbar of sexually harassing them and listen to them," she said.

Replying to a question asked by DH as to whether the DCW has taken suo motu cognizance of the women journalist's allegations of sexual harassment, she said she was seized with the matter and waiting for the victims to come out and lodge complaint.

"We want to give them some time to come out and lodge complaint. We are trying to reach out to the victims. We will definitely decide the next course of legal action once we get in touch with them," Maliwal said.

The organisers of the event said they had invited the National Commission for Women (NCW) chairperson Rekha Sharma and member-secretary of the NCW to participate in the discussion but they expressed their inability to attend the event.