Maneka wants NCW to have powers similar to civil court
NEWDELHI:Ahead of the first meeting of the group of ministers (GoM) for reviewing the law against sexual harassment at workplace, Union women and child development minister Maneka Gandhi has pitched for more powers for the National Commission for Women (NCW).
GandhiwantstheNCWtohave power akin to the civil courts as it would help the body to address all complaints that come to it. The focus of the meeting would be to strengthen the women’s commission, the minister added.
“The idea is to establish infrastructure which can handle these cases. We aim to provide the same powers to NCW as the National Human Rights Commission or the SC/ST commission akin to a civil court. If we can make it stronger, NCW is good enough to take care of all complaints that come to it,” Gandhi said.
At a law review consultation of the Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act, 2013 held in November, the NCW had said there was no specified authority to inquire and inspect the proper implementation of the act.
The Centre in October had constituted the GoM — headed by Union home minister Rajnath Singh — in a bid to examine the
existing legal and institutional frameworks for dealing with matters of sexual harassment of women at workplace.
It came in the wake of the ‘MeToo India’ movement. The GoM includes Union ministers Nitin Gadkari, Nirmala Sitharaman
and Maneka Gandhi. It is expected to examine the existing provisions for the safety of women and recommend further measures required to strengthen and make them more effective, within three months of its constitution.