Just because our society refuses to acknowledge cases of sexual harassment of men does not mean it does not happen. Often a largely ignored issue, sexual assault of men is a reality which is brushed aside conveniently and considered a taboo. But, sadly it exists.

To highlight the same and in an attempt for a balanced gender-neutral take on sexual harassment in the country, the UGC has now made a provision for male students to file harassment complaints against men, women and transgenders, reported The Telegraph.

Source: Twitter

As per the UGC (Prevention, prohibition and redressal of sexual harassment of women employees and students in higher educational institutions) Regulations notified in May 2016, sexual harassment is gender-neutral; male students are vulnerable to many forms of sexual harassment like their women and transgender counterparts.

These are basic facets of the news rules:

  • The regulation will be executed strictly and an internal committee will be set up to review complaints.
  • Students alleging sexual harassment will have to file their complaints within three months of the offence (except in extraordinary situations such as illness)
  • All complaints will be reviewed and action will be taken within 30 days.
  • As per the UGC provision, victim's friends, colleagues, relatives, co-students, or psychologists can file a complaint on his/her behalf if he/she is not able to do due to "physical or mental incapacity or death".
Source: Twitter

This landmark move comes after UGC panel was notified that there were several instances of men facing sexual harassment, even in educational institutions. In 2007, two students had filed a complaint against a teacher of Ramjas college.

And these are the implications:

  • If the universities and colleges don't follow the regulations, they will face action that may include cuts in funds
  • A student found guilty of sexual harassment can be rusticated, while an employee or a teacher found guilty will face action according to service rules.
  • There is also a provision of penalty for false complaints.