Punjab Governor Introduces Comprehensive Framework to Address Sexual Harassment in Universities

Punjab’s Governor, Baligh-ur-Rehman, has taken a resolute stride towards tackling incidents of sexual harassment in universities. In an official announcement, the governor has set up a comprehensive framework to proactively address and thwart cases of sexual harassment, prompted by recent occurrences within educational institutions.

The directive mandates universities to adopt specific measures aimed at fostering a safer environment for all members of their academic communities. The governor underlines the indispensability of shielding against sexual harassment to uphold an environment conducive to both learning and personal development. He unequivocally declares a zero-tolerance stance towards any form of sexual harassment.

The prescribed measures encompass the establishment of Inquiry Committees tasked with investigating complaints, ensuring expedited resolutions within 45 days, and appointing a senior female faculty member as a designated contact person to receive all reports. This contact person, positioned independently from the university’s management hierarchy, will guarantee the utmost confidentiality and privacy during complaint handling.

Moreover, the policy is to be integrated into the university’s code of conduct, translated into local languages, promoted through various awareness channels, and enforced as a ‘Code of Conduct’ that unambiguously outlines unacceptable behaviors and their consequences.

Universities are strongly encouraged to institute a transparent and easily accessible ‘Complaint Mechanism,’ educating both students and staff about identifying, preventing, and responding to sexual harassment. The directive also underscores the significance of establishing a robust monitoring and evaluation system, ensuring a continuous enhancement of the responsiveness of this mechanism.

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