Sexual harassment at workplace: Bombay HC bars disclosure of names, media reporting of cases

Mumbai: Bombay High Court issued guidelines for cases related to sexual harassment at the workplace under which names of the parties will not be mentioned in the order sheets. Justice GS Patel passed an order to protect the interest of both accused and victim parties in cases of sexual harassment at the workplace.

Justice Patel in his order said that “In the order sheets, the names of the parties will not be mentioned. The orders will read A vs B, P vs D etc. In the body of the order, the parties will not be referred to by their names but only as to Plaintiff, Defendant No 1 etc. In the body of any order, there will be no mention of any personally identifiable information (PII) such as email ids, mobile or telephone numbers, addresses etc. No witness`s names will be mentioned, nor will their addresses be noted. Orders/judgments on merits will not be uploaded.”

Talking about the current order, the court said that, “Because this order sets out general guidelines and does not address the merits, it is permitted to be uploaded.

“About pronouncing the orders/judgements in these cases, the court said that “All orders and judgments will be delivered in private, that is to say, not pronounced in open court but only in chambers or in-camera.”

For filing purposes, the order said that “No PII document shall be retained by the Registry when an affidavit, application or pleading is being filed. For verification of identity, the Registry may ask for production of an identity document to establish the identity of the deponent, but no copy of any such document is to be retained.”

The court said that the Registry will not permit anyone other than the Advocate-on-Record with a current and valid vakalatnama to take inspection or copies of any filing or order.



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