New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday issued a notice to the Registrar General of Madhya Pradesh High Court, following a plea filed by a former woman district judge. The woman had resigned after alleging that she was sexually harassed by a judge of the high court. The top court has also sought a response from the high court within six weeks. Also Read - Supreme Court To Start 'Hybrid Mode' Hearings on Experimental Basis From March 15
The woman judge had quit in 2014 accusing a judge of the Gwalior bench of the high court of seeking sexual favours from her. According to a News18 report, a bench headed by Justice AK Sikri admitted the petition by the former district and sessions judge and issued a notice to the MP High Court. Also Read - Two Killed In Brawl At Madhya Pradesh BJP MLA's Birthday Bash
The apex court has also agreed to examine the plea of reinstatement of a woman judicial judge. The woman judge had also written a letter to then Chief Justice of India explaining the reasons that forced her to resign from judicial service.
As per the report, an inquiry panel was set up in 2015 after 58 members of the Rajya Sabha gave the notice to move a motion to impeach the HC judge. The report by the committee was tabled in the Rajya Sabha in December last.
Relying upon the findings on her transfer, the petitioner has sought her job back. However, the accused judge had said that he was ready to face the death penalty if the charges against him were found to be true. In order to safeguard his integrity, the sexual harassment accused had stepped down from his post, maintaining a stand of innocence.
Notably, the #MeToo campaign has caught on in the country with a lot of women speaking up about the harassment they faced at the workplace. Many prominent names from the entertainment industry and politics are coming under this campaign.
Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar is also facing sexual harassment allegations by at least six women. He is not in India right now. Speculations are rife that the authorities had asked him to immediately return to India and clear the air over the allegations levelled against him amid the raging #MeToo movement.
Akbar, a senior journalist, joined the Bharatiya Janata Party ahead of 2014 general elections and was elected to the Rajya Sabha a year later. He was made the Minister of State for External Affairs in 2016. As many as six women journalists have called out Akbar, alleging sexual harassment at his hands. He has not yet responded to the allegations.
Meanwhile, the Congress has demanded an inquiry into sexual harassment allegations levelled against the minister and demanded his resignation.
From the entertainment industry, the prominent names that have been taken are those of film director Vikas Behl, singer Kailash Kher and actor Alok Nath, Rajat Kapoor.