This article will help you to know about sexual harassment law in Nepal.
Sexual harassment is a type of harassment involving the use of explicit or implicit sexual overtones, including unwelcome and inappropriate promises of rewards in exchange for sexual favors. Sexual harassment includes a range of actions from verbal transgressions to sexual abuse or assault.
Acts of sexual assault are mostly committed by teenagers and young men, but people of all ages commit sexual assault. And the offenders may be of either sex. The perpetrator does not have to be of the opposite sex.
Sexual harassment often involves bullying or coercion, and the harassers typically have social or economic power over the victim.
Sexual harassment or assault crimes usually involve motives of dominance or control rather than sexual gratification; it is a crime of violence, not a crime of passion.
Sexual harassment has been categorized as:
1. Physical sexual harassment,
2. Verbal sexual harassment,
3. Written sexual harassment,
4. Conduct-related sexual harassment.
Various Situations of Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment may occur in a variety of situations: workplaces as varied as factories, schools/colleges, academia, business houses, etc.
The harasser can identify with any gender and have any relationship with the victim.
The perpetrator can be anyone, such as a client, a co-worker, a legal guardian, a relative, a teacher or professor, a student, a friend, or a stranger.
Often, but not always, the perpetrator is in a position of power or authority over the victim (due to differences in age, or social, political, educational, or employment relationships).
Some Examples of Sexual Harassment:
Unwanted sexual statements: Sexual or “dirty” jokes, comments on physical attributes, spreading rumors about or rating others as to sexual activity or performance, talking about one’s sexual activity in front of others, and displaying or distributing sexually explicit drawings, pictures, and/or written material. Unwanted sexual statements can be made in person, in writing, electronically (email, instant messaging, blogs, web pages, etc.), and otherwise.
Unwanted personal attention: Letters, telephone calls, visits, pressure for sexual favors, pressure for unnecessary personal interaction, and pressure for dates where a sexual/romantic intent appears evident but remains unwanted.
Unwanted physical or sexual advances: Touching, hugging, kissing, fondling, touching oneself sexually for others to view, sexual assault, intercourse, or other sexual activity.
Forms of Sexual Harassment
Verbal Sexual Harassment
- Making sexual comments about a person’s body,
- Making sexual comments or innuendos (a remark that suggests something sexual or something unpleasant but does not refer to it directly),
- Turning work discussions to sexual topics,
- Telling sexual jokes or stories,
- Asking about sexual fantasies, preferences, or history,
- Asking personal questions about social or sexual life,
- Making kissing sounds, howling, and smacking lips,
- Making sexual comments about a person’s clothing, anatomy, or looks,
- Unwanted sexual teasing, jokes, remarks, or questions
- Telling lies or spreading rumors about a person’s personal sex life,
- Referring to an adult as a girl, hunk, doll, babe, or honey,
- Whistling at someone, making cat calls, etc.,
Non-Verbal Sexual Harassment
- Unwanted sexual looks or gestures,
- Staring at someone,
- Blocking a person’s path,
- Following a person,
- Giving personal gifts,
- Displaying sexually suggestive visuals,
- Making sexual gestures with hands or through body movements,
- Making facial expressions such as winking, throwing kisses, or licking lips,
- Making sexual gestures with hands or through body movements.
Physical Sexual Harassment
- Unwanted deliberate touching, leaning over, cornering, or pinching,
- Hugging, kissing, patting, or stroking,
- Giving a massage around the neck or shoulders,
- Touching the person’s clothing, hair, or body,
- Touching or rubbing oneself sexually around another person,
- Standing close or brushing up against another person
- Unwanted pressure for sexual favors
- Standing close or brushing up against a person,
- Sexually suggestive signals.
Also know: Law Related to Rape in Nepal
Sexual Harassment Law in Nepal- Legal Provisions
Law related to sexual harassment in Nepal is governed by Muluki Criminal Code 2074.
Sec.224 deals with sexual misconduct which virtually amounts to sexual harassment, though the Section does not use the term sexual harassment
Sec.224 deals with the prohibition of sexual misconduct.
No one should undertake sexual misconduct or cause to be undertaken sexual misconduct with anybody.
The following acts shall be treated as sexual misconduct if, except one’s wife or husband, someone :
- holds any other body without her consent with the intent of sex,
- or touches or tries to touch her sensitive part,
- or unties or tries to untie her inner clothing,
- or causes any obstruction to her in wearing or putting off her clothes,
- or takes her to some lonely place in an unnatural way,
- or makes her touch or hold his male part,
- or uses some vulgar or any similar type of word in an oral or written or symbolic form or through electronic means,
- or displaying to her some vulgar photo or picture,
- or teases or harasses with a sexual intention,
- or does any type of unnatural, unwanted, or undignified behavior with her.
Punishment – Sexual Harassment Law in Nepal
Imprisonment up to 3 years and fine up to Rs. 30,000/-if any of the acts mentioned in section 224 of Muluki Criminal Code 2074 is done.