Political parties should form complaints panel: Maneka

Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi has urged political parties to set up internal complaints committees, which is mandatory under law for all workplaces. “I have requested the presidents/ in-charge of all recognised National and State political parties to constitute the Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) as mandated under the Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act, 2013. This is in view of the fact that political parties employ a large number of personnel, including women, in their offices. It is our prerogative to ensure that women enjoy a safe working environment,” Ms. Gandhi said in a tweet. She also informed the women journalists’ group, Indian Women’s Press Corp (IWPC), in a letter that her Ministry would be looking into the institutional mechanism set up by each media organisation. The National Commission for Women has also asked women who have levelled allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct against M.J. Akbar on social media to lodge a formal complaint with it so that it can take appropriate action under law. Guild plea Meanwhile, the Editor’s Guild of India issued a statement urging Mr. Akbar, who resigned as the Minister of State for External Affairs, to withdraw his criminal defamation suit against journalist Priya Ramani. “While Mr. Akbar is entitled to all legal instruments available to a citizen to seek vindication, it would be paradoxical for a veteran editor to employ the instrument of criminal defamation,” the Guild said. Mr. Akbar has earlier served as the president of the Guild.

Source  : https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/political-parties-should-form-complaints-panel/article25267599.ece

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