NISM-NCW Workshop on
“Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Workplace”under POSH Act
August 26-27, 2019 | Mumbai
The School for Corporate Governance (SCG) of the National Institute of Securities Markets (NISM) jointly with National Commission for Women (NCW) had conducted a Two-day Workshop on “Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Workplace” on August 26-27, 2019 at NISM Pathalganga. NCW was the knowledge partner
Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 (POSH Act) requires every employer to organise workshops and awareness generation programs at regular intervals for sanitizing the employees with the provisions of the Act. The Act makes it mandatory for every employer having 10 or more employees to constitute an Internal Complaint Committee (ICC) to deal with cases of sexual harassment. This two-day workshop was conducted with an objective to build capacity amongst members of ICC to be able to handle complaints effectively, if and when received.
Under the corporate governance framework prescribed by SEBI for listed companies, every listed company will have to publish a Business Responsibility Reporting (BRR). The BRR should form part of the Annual Report which contains disclosures of compliance provisions including gender equality. The BRR report, amongst other things, requires all corporates to report whether ICC was set up and the number of complaints received by ICC. The objective focused is that “Business should create systems and practices to ensure a harassment fee workplace where employees feel safe and secure in discharging their responsibilities”.It is also seen that there is a steady increase in the number of complaints being reported through BRR.
This background, NISM jointly with National Commission for Women (NCW) conducted this workshop for members of Internal Complaint Committee of Market Infrastructure Institutions (MIIs) with the objective of creating a thorough understanding of role, responsibilities and process of handling complaint by ICC. All the technical sessions were conducted by faculty from NCW.
The program started with a brief inaugural session. Dr. V R Narasimhan, Dean, NISM, welcomed the dignitaries and requested the participants to take benefit of the rich experience and expertise of the faculty. Mr. Saurav Ghosh, Group Head-HR, National Stock Exchange, in his Keynote address emphasized that it is the responsibility of corporates to provide equality opportunity to all employees and ensure that there is no discrimination of any kind at any level. He also shared his experience as to how effectively issues relating to gender discrimination can be handled. He also pointed out that all organisations have to be aware of emerging changes in social life values and that such changes may creep into work life and ICC members should be prepared to handle these issues professionally in the interest of organizational effectiveness rather than getting carried out by the changes in social life values.
Mrs. Meenakshi Gupta, Member Secretary, National Commission for Women, delivered the inaugural address. She enlightened the participants with regard to the legal position on Gender Equality and also explained about the various types & causes of sexual harassment and its impact on women employees. She said that ICC members should be get confused between complaints arising out of gender biases and complaints relating to sexual harassment.
Ms Jayashree Velankar, Director, Jagori, highlighted the importance and meaning of Gender Equality and also dwelt upon the measures to prevent sexual harassment by providing national and global perspectives.
Ms Kanchan Khattar, Senior Coordinator, National Commission for Women, explained to the participants about the Composition, Role and Responsibility of ICC Members, by illustrating appropriate case laws.
Dr. Anagha Sarpotdar, Consultant, elucidated the participants about “Conducting an enquiry” through live examples and also about the reporting requirements under the POSH Act.
Around 27 participants from SEBI, Market Infrastructure Institutions and NISM attended the Workshop and benefitted from the deliberations.The program was well received and appreciated by the participants.
In the valedictory ceremony Smt. Rekha Sharma, Chairperson, National Commission for Women, addressed the participants and gave away of “Certificate of Participation”. The Chairperson, in her speech, advised the participants to ensure strict compliance with the provisions such as protection of witnesses, external member’s presence in the ICC, handling of complaints against senior functionaries, etc.
Shri Sunil Kadam, Registrar, NISM, while delivering the Vote of Thanks, expressed his gratitude to National Commission for Women for providing the support for the program and also thanked the participants and NISM Faculty & Staff, who made the program a grand success.