The POSH Act extends to the ‘whole of India’. It is mandatory for employers having 10 or more employees to register their Internal Complaints Committee (ICC). The registration of this Act varies from state to state.
The Law applies to private and public sector companies, government bodies, ministries, NGOs and educational institutions.
If the employer fails to comply with the law, he/she is liable to a fine of Rs.50,000. On repeated non-compliance of the law, the employer can be penalised with double the fine amount. Non-compliance can also lead to cancellation of licence, withdrawal or non-renewal of registration for carrying on the business. However, employers should look at complying with this law, not because of penalties but because sexual harassment-free work environment would lead to better growth of the business.
Compliance Under POSH
The registration of POSH includes the formation of Policy and ICC committee in every company. The ICC committee comprises 4 members – Presiding Officer, employee members and an external member. Annual returns need to be filed by the Internal Complaints Committee (in case of more than 10 employees) or the Local Complaints Committee (in case of fewer than 10 employees) stating the company’s POSH compliance, i.e. the number of cases filed; their disposal and investigations etc. each calendar year and submit the same to the District officer under the supervision of the employer. In cases where the annual report is not required to be filed, the employer is responsible for communicating the total number of harassment cases filed in a year to the District Officer.
For more information on – POSH ADVISORY