Vishakha Guidelines - Music Academy

Vishakha Guidelines

As a matter of good governance and in order to comply with the obligations imposed by law and, by the Vishaka judgement for prevention of sexual harassment at the work place, a policy in this regard has been put in place at The Music Academy after being adopted by the Executive Committee at its meeting on 17th June 2018.

168, T.T.K. Road Chennai-600014.

Policy relating to Prevention of sexual harassment:
(Adopted by the Executive Committee at its meeting on 17th June 2018)

Our Constitution affirms the woman’s fundamental right to be treated with dignity, respect and decency. As a matter of good governance and to comply with the obligations imposed by law and by the Vishaka judgment for prevention of sexual harassment at the workplace, it has been decided to draw up guidelines for the same, to provide for a complaints mechanism and to have an Internal Complaints Committee at the Music Academy.

1) “Sexual Harassment” includes the following unwelcome acts or behavior (whether directly or by implication):

(i) physical contact and advances; or
(ii) a demand or request for sexual favours; or
(iii) making sexually coloured remarks; or
(iv) showing pornography; or
(v) any other unwelcome physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct of sexual nature.

2) “President” means the President of the Music Academy.

3) “Work place” in the context of the Music Academy means and includes its entire campus and includes all spaces or locations in the campus where the activities of the Academy are carried out.

4) “Employee” means a person employed at the workplace for any work on regular, temporary, adhoc or daily wage basis, either directly or through an agent, including a contractor, with or, without the knowledge of the principal employer, whether for remuneration or not, or working on a voluntary basis or otherwise, whether the terms of employment are express or implied and includes a co-worker, a contract worker, probationer, trainee, apprentice or called by any other such name.

5) Prevention of sexual harassment:-

(a) No woman shall be subjected to sexual harassment at the workplace.
(b) If the following circumstances occur, or are present in relation to or connected with any act or behaviour of sexual harassment, they may amount to sexual harassment:—

(i) implied or explicit promise of preferential treatment in her employment or of opportunity for a performance at the Academy
(ii) implied or explicit threat of detrimental treatment in her employment; or of denial of opportunity for a performance at the Academy
(iii) implied or explicit threat about her present or future employment status; or
(iv) interference with her work or creating an intimidating or offensive or hostile work environment for her; or
(v) humiliating treatment likely to affect her health or safety.

6) The Internal Complaints Committee.

An “Internal Complaints Committee” will be constituted which shall consist of the following members:-

(a) a Presiding Officer who shall be a woman employed at a senior level at workplace from amongst the employees,
(b) not less than two members from amongst employees preferably committed to the cause of women or who have had experience in social work or have legal knowledge,
(c) one member from amongst non-governmental organizations or associations committed to the cause of women or a person familiar with the issues relating to sexual harassment.
(Note 1: At least one half of the total members so nominated shall be women)
(Note 2: The term of office of ICC members 3 years)
(Note 3: The fees and expenses of the ICC members shall be borne by the Academy)

7) Complaint of sexual harassment :-

1) Any aggrieved woman can give a complaint in writing to the ICC which shall be deposited in the Complaints Box in the office. No anonymous complaint will be entertained.
2) The keys to the Complaints Box will be with the President.
3) The complaint should be given within a period of 3 months from the date of the incident and if it is a series of incidents, then 3 months from the date of the last incident.
4) The ICC can extend the time limit by another 3 months if it is satisfied with the circumstances that prevented the aggrieved woman from filing the complaint.
5) Before making an inquiry or at the instance of the aggrieved woman, the ICC can take steps to settle the matter between her and the respondent through conciliation. No monetary settlement shall be the basis of conciliation.
6) The ICC shall record the settlement and send it to the President.
7) If there is no settlement, the ICC shall conduct a hearing giving opportunity to both the parties, and arrive at a decision. The ICC while recommending punishments may bear in mind Rule (9) framed by the central government).
8) The proceedings of the ICC will be treated as confidential.
9) If the complaint is against an employee, the matter will be placed before the ICC for further action as specified above.
10) The ICC shall communicate its decision to the President who will communicate it to the parties. The copies of the decision shall be given to the both parties.
11) If the complaint is against a member of the Executive Committee, the matter will be placed before a Committee consisting of the President of the Academy, the Presiding Member of the ICC, and another member of the ICC. After hearing both the parties, this Committee shall make such recommendations to the Executive Committee as it deems fit, which may be an apology to the complainant or demand for the member’s resignation or removal from the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will convey the same to both the parties. The copies of the decision shall be given to both parties.

Internal Complaints Committee (ICC)

1. Professor Ritha Rajan, (Academic Coordinator, Advanced School of Carnatic Music at the Music Academy) – Chairperson
2. Smt. Hema Sampath, Senior Advocate, Chennai – Member
3. Smt. Banu Rekha, (Archives-in-charge, The Music Academy) – Member
4. Shri M K Jagadish, (Library Consultant, The Music Academy) – Member