Berger Paints India Limited ("the Company") firmly believes in the right to equality, right to life and the right to work with dignity and any threat to such rights would be taken up by the Company with serious implications. One of such threat is sexual harassment of women at the workplace.
The Company is committed to providing a workplace that is free from all forms of discrimination, including sexual harassment. Any employee's behaviour that fits the definition of sexual harassment is a form of misconduct which may result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal. Sexual harassment could also subject this Company and, in some cases, an individual to substantial civil and criminal penalties.
The Company's policy on sexual harassment is part of its overall affirmative action efforts pursuant to laws of the land prohibiting discrimination based on age, race, colour, religion, national origin, citizenship status, marital status, disability and gender. Specifically, this policy is to provide protection against sexual harassment of women at workplace and for the prevention and redress of complaints of sexual harassment and for matters connected therewith.
The Company has zero-tolerance for sexual harassment and values each and every employee working and wish to protect their dignity and self respect and hence, all concerned should take cognizance of the fact that the Company strongly opposes sexual harassment, and that such behaviour against women is prohibited by the law as set down in The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and Rules framed thereunder (hereinafter referred to as ("the Act") as well as the terms of employment. Commission of any act of sexual harassment as defined in the Act and in this Policy shall result in strict disciplinary action.
Every complaint received shall be forwarded to internal complaint committee formed under the policy for redressal. The investigation shall be carried out by Internal Complaints Committee ("ICC") constituted for this purpose. ICC has been constituted of the following members as nominated by the Company:
Any aggrieved woman may make, in writing, a complaint of sexual harassment at workplace to the ICC giving details of the sexual harassment meted out to her within a period of 3 months from the date of incident and in case of a series of incidents, within a period of 3 months from the date of last incident, which may be extended for a further period of 3 months, if circumstances warrant such extension in the opinion of the ICC.
The Presiding Officer or any Member of the ICC can render reasonable assistance to the aggrieved woman for making complaint in writing, in case they are unable to do so.
On receipt of complaint, the ICC shall decide the place and time for hearing the complaint and shall intimate the date, time and place of hearing to the Complainant and Respondent. The ICC shall follow principle of natural justice while handling such complaints.
(i) Where the aggrieved woman is unable to make a complaint on account of their physical incapacity, a complaint may be filed by
a) a relative or friend; or
b) a special educator or
c) a qualified psychiatrist or psychologist; or
d) the guardian or authority under whose care they are receiving treatment or care; or
e) any person who has knowledge of the incident jointly with any of the abovementioned persons.
(iii) Where the aggrieved woman for any other reason is unable to make a complaint, a complaint may be filed by any person who has knowledge of the incident, with her written consent.
(iv) Where the aggrieved woman is dead, a complaint may be filed by any person who has knowledge of the incident, with the written consent of her legal heir.
The aggrieved woman or person authorized on her behalf as per the aforesaid provision, shall make a complaint to the ICC as per the Act.
The ICC may before initiating an inquiry, and at the aggrieved woman's request, attempt to settle the matter through conciliation. However, ICC shall ensure that no monetary settlement shall be made as a basis of conciliation.
Where a settlement has been arrived as mentioned hereinabove, the ICC shall record the settlement so arrived and forward the same to the employer to take action as specified in the recommendation. The settlement terms shall be signed by both the parties and the ICC shall provide the copies of the settlement to the aggrieved woman and the respondent.
Where, a settlement is arrived as mentioned hereinabove, no further inquiry shall be conducted by the ICC. The Committee may, during such investigation, exercise the power of a civil court, vested in it, in respect of:
Any complaint of sexual harassment shall be taken up with utmost seriousness by the Company. However, there shall be zero tolerance for any false and malicious complaint.
Except in cases where service rule exists, if the ICC comes to a conclusion that the allegation was made with malicious intent or the aggrieved woman or any other person making the complaint on behalf of the aggrieved woman produced false or forged or misleading documents to prove its case, the ICC may recommend the Employer to take action against the complainant who has made the complaint as per Clause VI (3) of this Policy. A similar recommendation to the Employer for taking action would be recommended against any witness whom the ICC concludes, that he/she has given false evidence or produced forged or misleading documents.
The responsibilities and duties of the Employer are as under:
The Company may make any alteration or amendment or rescind any of the clauses of this Policy as and when it finds it necessary to do so as long as it complies with the Act. Any such alterations or amendment or rescinding will be intimated to the employees.
The identity and address of the aggrieved woman, respondent and witnesses shall not be published or disclosed to the public or media.
The decision of the Company shall be final and binding on all. However, the same is without prejudice to any recourse that the Company or the individual concerned may have against the respondent and it shall not limit or restrict the rights of the Complainant and/or the Company to pursue, nor shall they be precluded from pursuing, such further and other legal actions as may be available under law.