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Maharashtra Government Notifies Appellate Authorities Under POSH Act After Filing Of Art. 226 Petition Before Bombay High Court

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
1 April 2021 8:25 AM GMT
Maharashtra Government Notifies Appellate Authorities Under POSH Act After Filing Of Art. 226 Petition Before Bombay High Court
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Over seven years after coming into force of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act and Rules in 2013, the Maharashtra Government yesterday issued a notification appointing the Appellate Authority under the Act. The Industries, Energy and Labour Department of the State appointed "Industrial Courts", constituted under section 10 of...

Over seven years after coming into force of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act and Rules in 2013, the Maharashtra Government yesterday issued a notification appointing the Appellate Authority under the Act.

The Industries, Energy and Labour Department of the State appointed "Industrial Courts", constituted under section 10 of the Maharashtra Industrial Relations Act, 1947, as the Appellate Authority under the POSH Act in respect of Industrial Establishments that fall under State jurisdiction.

The development comes in response to a writ petition filed by a Pune based educationist, accused of sexually harassing an employee at the school where he is a member of the Managing Committee.

Advocate Dr. Chinmay Bhosale appearing for the Petitioner informed the High Court that the Petitioner was held guilty of the alleged misdeeds by a Local Complaints Committee, Pune and the former wished to challenge the conviction order.

However, in the absence of an appropriate notified appellate authority under section 2(a) of the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946 [as per the provisions of Rule 11 of the POSH Rules] the Petitioner is left devoid of an appropriate forum to prefer an appeal.

The plea stated,

"The POSH Act provides for an appeal to the aggrieved [under Section 11] and the right of the Petitioner to an appeal before a competent appellate authority is being hindered and the Petitioner has been subjected to great injustice"

It may be noted that the Petitioner had preferred an appeal before the Industrial Court, Pune, but the same came to be rejected on the ground that it has no jurisdiction to entertain the Appeal.

The Court recorded in paragraph 5 of the order that, "no notifcation has been issued in the name of the Industrial Court as per rule 11 of Prevention of Sexual Harassment Rule 2013".

In view of the above submissions, a Division Bench comprising of Justices KK Tated and RI Chagla had asked the Assistant Govt Pleader to file an affidavit in the matter.

"The AGP is directed to file Affidavit of the concerned officer explaining whether they issued the notification under Rule 11 of the Prevention of Sexual Harassment Rule 2013 to notify the Appellate Authority, if not, then within how much they will issue said notification to notify the Appellate Authority," the High Court said.

In response to the above order, the Maharashtra Government has appointed 20 Industrial Courts as Appellate Authorities under the POSH Act for the respective specified districts.

Click Here To Download Order

Click Here To Download Notification


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