SC refuses to consider PIL on #MeToo plaints action

"Why should we hear you? If the affected persons come, we will consider," the bench said, dismissing the plea. (Image source: Flickr/gipuzkoa)

The Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a PIL by an advocate seeking directions to treat statements of sexual harassment made during #MeToo campaign, as complaints for FIRs and provide justice to the woman victims in a time-bound manner.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K M Joseph told advocate-petitioner M L Sharma, "if there is any cognisable offence, there is a procedure to register the FIR".

Sharma said the National Commission for Women has not acted till the date or taken suo motu cognisance on so many cases that have come to light on sexual harassment and exploitation of women.

"Why should we hear you? If the affected persons come, we will consider," the bench said, dismissing the plea.

The court also dismissed another petition by advocate Mahesh K Tiwari, contending that there has been no proper implementation of the law against sexual harassment at workplace.

Several woman victims have come out on social media platforms to out their perpetrators of sexual harassment as part of professional or personal life in film, media, corporate and sports industry. BJP leader M J Akbar had to resign as a Union Minister after more than a dozen women complained about harassment during his stint as the editor of a newspaper over 20 years ago.

In his petition, advocate Sharma urged the court to take suo motu action and treat statements of the victim woman made on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter as information within the provision of Section 154 of CrPC and register criminal cases under Section 354, 375, 376 and others of IPC and to prosecute accused persons in accordance of law.

He also sought a direction to set up a fast track court for conducting trial of the all sexual harassment cases to provide justice in a time bound manner.

Sharma also wanted a direction to the National Commission for Women to provide safe platform and assistance to the victims.

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SC refuses to consider PIL on #MeToo plaints action

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