Dirty talk could prove costly | Monday, July 09, 2007
I found the following article in last Friday's DNA. Wanted to post it here then itself, but this blogger.com won't let me do that. My 'new post' editor was not opening up. So, it got delayed to this week. Anyways, here it is.
Dirty talk with women could prove costly
Bill to curb workplace sexual abuse wants offenders fined
Men who subject women to lewd and obscene remarks could soon find themselves in serious trouble. The ministry of women and child development (WCD) is preparing the 'Protection of Women against Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill' designed to defend women against sexual abuse. The remit of the Bill covers offices, aircraft, restaurants, and homes, among other sites.
The Bill is likely to be tabled in the monsoon session of parliament, but not without controversies. The Bill is facing severe criticism from men's organizations which feel that the law, like the DV Act, may be misused by women to settle scores or to secure personal gains. "After destroying the domestic harmony of people, the government is now planning to destroy the harmony at the workplace," said Swarup Sarkar, the coordinator of Save Family Foundation (SFF), a men's organization. "For instance, an incompetent woman worker who is not promoted can use it as a tool against her boss."
Sarkar said the Bill may also affect women's chances of finding employment. "Men will think twice before recruiting women because of the fear of being framed," he said. The SFF has argued in a representation to the WCD ministry that instead of a sexual harassment bill, the government should bring a cross-gender law to prevent any kind of harassment at workplaces. The men's groups are also opposing the new Bill on the grounds that existing laws, such as those on rape and sexual assault, render any fresh legislation superfluous.
But government officials and women organizations reject that argument. "This law would work as a deterrent and encourage women to work without fear," said Romi Sharma, spokeswoman for the National Commission for Women. "The pitfalls in the law can only be found after it is implemented and changes can be made through amendments."
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OKAY. So, here is the BIG question. Who is right here ...?? The WCD for taking up the cause of Working Women who do face a lot of harassment at workplace or SFF who are fighting for the Men who are exploited under such laws... !! WCD has a valid point - that women at all walks of life, specially at workplaces are subjected to sexual harassment and they do need a safeguard to protect them. But I guess this is just half the truth. Men are not spared. In today's age, gals no longer stay away from flirting with their seniors to gain promotions n all. And those who think that the story told in "Aitraz" is just a filmy story, think again. THIS IS happening. So, should men also sought the implementation of a similar law for themselves?
On one hand, we talk about gender equality n all. And on the other, when it's about opportunities, there is uproar to give women special treatment by portraying them as weaker sex. I guess Swarup Sarkar is right asking "the government should bring a cross-gender law to prevent any kind of harassment at workplaces"
I am a newbee in this corporate world. So maybe I don't know the twists n turns of this world. But what I've seen here in past 6 months, I'm pretty much sure that women are not the only victim.
Do give your opinion and views on this matter. Leave your comments and cast your opinion on this poll. Looking forward to it.