SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir Sports Council has taken a significant stride by making revisions to the complaint committee aimed at addressing incidents of sexual harassment of women in the workplace.
According to a directive issued by Nuzhat Gul, the Secretary of the J&K Sports Council, on Friday, Ritika Slathia, a Senior Judo Coach, has been appointed as a new member of the committee, replacing Veena Chib, a Hockey Coach who retired in 2020.
It is worth mentioning that in April 2019, the Jammu and Kashmir State Sports Council established local complaint committees with the objective of addressing any complaints related to sexual harassment of women in the workplace. At that time, Dr Naseem Javed Chowdhary, the Secretary of the J&K State Sports Council, formed a 10-member local committee, consisting of five members each for the Jammu and Kashmir Divisions. The committee was formed to receive complaints under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal) Act of 2013.
These local complaint committees were set up at the district level in both divisions to address issues concerning sexual harassment of women in the workplace. An order issued in 2019 stated, “The committees will follow up on cases of this nature, ensuring prompt reporting and resolution within one week, after which the matter will be forwarded to the Sports Council Secretariat for further action with the General Administration Department, Civil Secretariat.”
The committee for the Kashmir Division consists of Nuzhat Ara, Sports Officer (K), as the chairperson, Bilqis Mir (water sports) as the member secretary, and Nusrat Gazala, Rafiqa Banu, and Ruksana Akhter as members.
On the other hand, the committee for the Jammu Division includes Chief Coach Krupali Singh, who is also the In-charge Manager of the New Indoor Complex at M A Stadium, Jammu, serving as the chairperson. Rachna Jamwal, a Senior Fencing Coach, is the member secretary, while Arshi Nad (Senior Judo Coach) and Vinaya Sharma (Senior Handball Coach) are members of the committee.
The revival of this committee has been warmly welcomed by many, including female athletes, who believe that it will help address incidents of harassment not only within the department but also on the field, particularly among athletes.