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Why we need Internal Complaint Committee?


The Parliament of India passed the “Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal) Act,” in the year 2013. This ACT provides protection against sexual harassment of women at the workplace. Redressal & for the prevention and of complaints of sexual harassment and for the matters connected therewith or incidental thereto

The Constitution of the internal complaints committee is mandatory for all organizations of state/central government and the private sector. These organizations can be governmental departments, schools, colleges, or unorganized sectors like shops, malls, etc.

The main objective of an internal complaint committee is to protect women workers from sexual harassment at the workplace.

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Objectives of the committee are:

  • To develop rules and regulations against sexual harassment against women at the workplace
  • To introduce a permanent mechanism for the prevention and redressal of sexual harassment
  • To make sure that the implementation of the policy in letter and spirit through proper reporting of the complaints and their follow-up procedures.
  • To create a secure physical and social environment to reduce any act of sexual harassment.
  • To promote a psychological environment & social to raise awareness on sexual harassment in its various forms. 

According to THE SEXUAL HARASSMENT OF WOMEN AT THE WORKPLACE (PREVENTION, PROHIBITION, AND REDRESSAL) ACT 2013, sexual harassment includes any one or more of the following unwelcome acts or behaviour (whether directly or by indirectly) namely:

  • Demand or request for sexual favours; or
  • Physical contact; or
  • Showing pornography; or
  • Making sexually coloured remarks; or
  • Any other undesirable physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct of sexual nature. The director shall appoint the member of the committee and  The Committee shall consist of the following nine members, as under, namely:
    1. A senior female Faculty member from the Institute, as the Chairperson
    2. 2 Faculty members (one female and one male)
    3. 2 Staff members (one female and one male from Group ‘B’ & ‘C’)
    4. 3 PhD students (two females and one male)
    5. An External female member (a preferable lawyer by profession or from an NGO committed to the cause of women or familiar with issues related to sexual harassment)
  • One of the members shall be a woman belonging to the Scheduled Castes or the Scheduled Tribes or the Other Backward Classes or minority community notified by the Central Government, from time to time
  • The term of each member shall be of 3 years

How to file a complaint & how this committee work:

  • Any aggrieved woman may make in writing a complaint of sexual harassment at a workplace to ICC, within a period of 3 months from the date of the incident and in case of a series of incidents, within a period of 3 months from the last incident. 6 copies of a written complaint should be submitted to the committee or any member along with the list of witnesses and supporting documents.
  • Any complaint received by the member should be immediately forwarded to the Presiding officer
  • The committee shall discuss and decide on its jurisdiction to deal with the case or reject the complaint.
  • The committee will provide assistance to aggrieved women, if she chooses, to file a police complaint in relation to the offence.
  • No monetary settlement shall be made as to the basis of conciliation.
  • If conciliation is found to be not feasible, notice will be issued to both parties for a hearing.

Submission of Reports by Internal Complaint Committee:

  • The Internal Committee shall in each calendar year prepare, in Prescribed form and prescribed time as may be prescribed, an annual report and submit the same to the employer and the District Officer.
  • The Institute shall include in its report the number of cases filed if any, and their disposal under this Act in the annual report of the Institute or where no such report is required to be prepared, intimate such number of cases, if any, to the District Officer.

This portion of the site is for informational purposes only. The content is not legal advice. The statements and opinions are the expression of author, not corpseed, and have not been evaluated by corpseed for accuracy, completeness, or changes in the law.


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