Rajnath, Sitharaman, Gadkari and Maneka on govt’s #MeToo panel

Rajnath Singh (Image- Scroll.in)

The Group of Ministers will, within three months of its constitution, examine the existing provisions for the safety of women and recommend further measures required to strengthen and make them more effective

HIGHLIGHTS
• Rajnath Singh will chair the Group of Ministers
• This follows the launch of a sex offender registry last month
• Comes in the wake of India’s #MeToo movement against sexual misconduct

The government on Wednesday constituted a Group of Ministers (GoM) to strengthen the legal and institutional frameworks to deal with and prevent sexual harassment at workplace.

The GoM will recommend action required for effective implementation of the existing provisions, as well as for strengthening the existing legal and institutional frameworks for addressing issues related to sexual harassment at workplace.

The group headed by Home Minister Rajnath Singh includes Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Road and Transport minister Nitin Gadkari and Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi.

The Group of Ministers will, within 3 months of its constitution, examine the existing provisions for the safety of women and recommend further measures required to strengthen and make them more effective.

 

India has taken steps to crack down on sexual offences in recent weeks. Last month, the government launched a sex offender registry, as well as a second portal which citizens can use to complain anonymously about online content such as child porn.

It has also launched an electronic complaint box so women can complain about sexual harassment at the workplace.

With the #metoo movement gaining momentum, Maneka Gandhi had earlier expressed her solidarity with the movement and assured that her ministry will set up a committee of senior judicial and legal persons to look into issues of sexual harassment. Gandhi said she believes in the “pain and trauma behind every single complaint” and cases of sexual harassment at work “must be dealt with a policy of zero tolerance”. She later urged all political parties to set up internal committees.