Anti Sexual Harassment Cell
The definitions and policies of Anti-sexual harassment cell:
Sexual Harassment – Any unwelcome sexually motivated behavior, whether directed or by implication involving physical contacts or advances, demand for sexual favor, sexually remarks and other unwelcome physical, verbal or non-verbal expressions of sexual nature which affects women’s right to work in a congenial environment at the workplace.
Scope –The provision of these rules and procedures shall apply to all students and academic and non-academic staff of RVS. These rules and regulations shall be applicable to all complaints of sexual harassment made by:
- A student against member/members of academic or non-academic staff or co-students or a member of the academic community against a student/students or another member of the academic or non-academic community within and outside the campus.
- A service provider against a student/students or a member/members of the academic or nonacademic staff or a students or a member or academic or non-academic staff against an outsider or service provider, if the alleged sexual harassment is reported to have taken place within the campus.
Functions: Mediation of cases arising out of incidence of sexual assault or sexual harassment occurring in the campus, overview of campus security services to ensue prompt intimation to the committee of RVS of all incidents of alleged sexual harassment, organizing of training programs for the staff and the students of RVS to equip them well for handling sexual harassment cases and assistance to aggrieved parties in the campus to make complaints to suitable authority in deserving cases. Meetings with the students and staff members shall be organized to create awareness and to ensure a healthy environment on the campus.
Filing of Complaints:
- Complaints of sexual harassment shall be lodged with the committee. Such complaints should be taken up by the committee for resolution through mediation, conciliation as promptly as possible, but by not later than two days after complaint on the alleged incident is received.
- The complaints should be made in writing. If the complaint is not able to give in writing himself/herself, the complaint can be given in writing or his/her behalf by his /her companion.
- Normally a complaint should be lodged within a week after the incident. In special circumstances the time limit for the submission of complaints may be extended to a month. The special circumstances that led to the granting of such extension should be recorded by the committee.
- The complainant is at liberty to withdraw the complaint at any stage of enquiry, provided such withdrawal is made independently and under free will. The enquiry may be terminated on receipt of the request for such withdrawal.
- A restraint order may be served on the accused, giving him/her a summary of the complaint and warning him/her against making any attempt to exert pressure on the complainant or any other person involved in dealing with the complaint.
- The complainant may bring to the notice of the committee, attempts if any made by the accused to violate the order.
- The committee is empowered to terminate the enquiry proceeding and to give ex-parte decision on the complaint on valid grounds.
- The committee may appoint an enquiry committee to make investigations into the complaint if deemed necessary.
- It shall submit a detailed report communicating its findings based on its investigations. The committee shall pronounce its verdict whether the accused is/are guilty or not guilty. The committee in cases in which the accused is / are found guilty, should indicate the gravity of the offence, whether it is major, serious or minor.
- The enquiry committee shall complete the enquiry in the shortest possible time not exceeding a month from the date on which the complaint is referred to it, except for special reasons.
- The complainants/s and the accused shall be given reasonable opportunity to present and defend their cases. Witness may be called if deemed necessary. In case the accused fail/s to attend consecutively for three hearings despite call notices for the same, the enquiry may be terminated and the decision taken on the co9mplaint on ex-prate basis.
- Counseling services may be made available to the victims and the accused on request.
- If the complainant the accused and the witnesses desire to be accompanied by a companion of their choice, they may be permitted to do so, provided the person so chosen will have only observer status and shall leave the meeting after making his/her testimony.
- The complainant and the accused shall have the right of cross-examination of all witnesses.
- The enquiry committee shall have the right to disallow questions from the victim or the accused, if the questions are deemed irrelevant and unnecessary.
- All persons heard by the enquiry committee as well as observers shall take and observe an oath of secrecy about the proceedings.
Regressive Disciplinary Action: Committee would pass on the findings of the enquiry committee to the Honorable Chairman, for taking appropriate regressive action. If the Chairman finds that, there is requirement for further investigation and he may order for a review of the report by the enquiry committee and may even refer the case to competent legal authority, if it is grave nature.
- If the enquiry committee finds no merit in a complaint, the chairperson of the committee may issue a show-case notice to the complainant requiring him/her to explain within three days as to shy disciplinary action should not be taken against him/her.
In Complaints involving faculty and students, the faculty shall not teach or supervise the work of the student concerned during the period of enquiry and till the decision on the case. Members of a academic and /or non-academic staff involved in such complaints either as the victim or the accused shall not write the confidential reports of the complainant or the victim during the enquiry and decision of the case.