Delhi HC | Employers have to be more considerate and sympathetic to working women’s maternal needs

“Women who constitute almost half of the segment of our society have to be given due weightage and honoured and treated with dignity at places where they work to earn their livelihood.”

Delhi High Court: A Single Judge Bench comprising of Suresh Kumar Kait, J. while allowing a petition held that “Whatever is needed to facilitate the birth of child to a woman who is in service, the employer has to be considerate and sympathetic towards her and must realise the physical difficulties which a working woman would face in performing her duties at the workplace while carrying a baby in the womb or while looking after the child.”

The facts of the case place that respondent advertised a public notice for “Drawing a Panel for Guest Teachers for Empanelment in Delhi Government Schools for the Academic Year 2017-18”. Respondent took out another public notice calling all the selected Guest Teachers in regard to verification of their documents and further on getting selected petitioner got her documents verified. Later in January, the petitioner gave birth to a child and after almost a day of delivery received respondent’s letter for final verification of documents. Respondent harassed the petitioner by not marking her attendance even after being present for which petitioner wrote a letter to the respondent and sought for the issuance of joining letter.

Later, respondent placed its submissions that once the panel has been finalized, further engagement as Guest Teacher is to be taken on the basis of requirement expressed by any school. Such a person, who is enrolled as Guest Teacher in the panel, has not any vested or legal right to be further engaged as a Guest Teacher.

The High Court on perusal of the submissions placed stated that the petitioner is eligible for the panel for Guest Teachers and respondent due to some communication gap has not selected the petitioner. Further, it was established that the respondent did not entertain petitioner’s case as she had recently delivered a child and would not have been able to work if any requirement comes from the school.  Hence, the Court directed the respondent to give place to the petitioner in the panel and stated that her services can be utilized as and when required. [Yogita Chauhan v. State (NCT of Delhi),2018 SCC OnLine Del 12893, decided on 12-12-2018]

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