There has been a 54 per cent rise in registered cases of sexual harassment at workplaces in India between 2014-17. The number of registered cases were 371 in 2014, which increased to 570 in 2017.
As per the data for the first seven months of 2018, as many as 533 cases of sexual harassment were reported across India.
Over the four years ending July 27, 2018, as many as 2,535 cases were registered.
Over 2014-18, Uttar Pradesh reported the highest number of cases (726), followed by Delhi (369), Haryana (171), Madhya Pradesh (154), and Maharashtra (147), as per the data presented in Lok Sabha. Apart from Delhi, all the other states are BJP-ruled.
The #MeToo movement came to light when actor Tanushree Dutta accused actor Nana Patekar of harassing her on the sets of the film ‘Horn Ok Please’ in 2008.
Tanushree Dutta led to the beginning of the Indian leg of the MeToo movement. Following her, several women have come out and taken to social media to share their stories of harassment.
Many prominent names of the media and entertainment industry have been alleged to harass women belonging to the industry. These include former editor of The Asian Age MJ Akbar, actors Alok Nath and Rajat Kapoor, directors Vikas Bahl, Subhash Ghai and Sajid Khan, journalists Prashant Jha, Mayank Jain, Meghnad Bose, KR Sreenivas and Gautam Adhikari, comedian Utsav Chakraborty and advertising consultant Suhel Seth.
IndiaSpend has reported on March 4, 2017 that according to a survey by the Indian Bar Association in 2017, of 6,047 respondents, as many as 70% women said they did not report sexual harassment by superiors because they feared the repercussions.
The central government enacted Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 which is “an act to provide protection against sexual harassment of women at workplace and for the prevention and redressal of complaints of sexual harassment.
It is time that the victims are given an ear and their perpetrators are brought to justice.