IWPC’s Statement on Malini Subramaniam Harassment
The Indian Women’s Press Corps expresses its deep concern over the manner in which a slew of leading media houses have been either abruptly terminating the contracts of their employees or have shut down operations without any prior notice, either to the government or to their employees. This has undoubtedly created a lot of vulnerability and distress in the media, affecting not only the men and women directly employed but their families as well. What used to be isolated incidents has become the norm.
Employees are no longer given proper appointment letters, leave entitlements, salary slips and neither are statutory contributions like that of Provident Fund made. There is no social security cover for journalists as well. Several media associations have repeatedly brought these aspects to the notice of the government.
While independence and the freedom of the media are sacrosanct and need to be upheld at all times, these developments need to be taken cognisance of with utmost seriousness and the government needs to ensure that under the cloak of self-regulation, violations of statutory norms as well as basic labour laws do not take place.
The IWPC also wishes to bring to the government’s notice that several media houses yet do not have properly constituted committees to prevent sexual harassment at the work place as mandated by the law. In some cases, persons found indicted by such committees even where they exist, have been reinstated at higher positions of authority.
The IWPC urges the I&B ministry and other concerned ministries like Labour for instance to keep a track of the violations of the law and to take action where necessary.
T K RAJLAKSMI, PRESIDENT
RAVINDER BAWA, GENERAL SECRETARY
Indian Womens’ Press Corps(IWPC)