The Times Of India – 2.00 pm IST When a lady has her work day off and is away, chances are you’ll encounter a few female workers.
And not just in India.
A study in Australia has found that women workers who work at a large multinational are the most likely to be sexually harassed.
This is a problem for women in India, too, where it is not uncommon to see a female worker being sexually harassed or even assaulted by her male colleagues.
In a report published in January, the Australian Women’s Resource Centre found that of the 1,000 women and girls surveyed, 71% were sexually harassed by their male colleagues, compared to 22% of women surveyed by the International Labour Organization.
“We have a huge problem,” said Priti Vyas, a research fellow at the Centre for the Study of Women in Asia at the University of NSW, referring to the problems women face in the workplace.
“There is a huge gender imbalance in the workforce, but it’s also a problem when it comes to sexual harassment.
It’s very much prevalent.”
While India is often thought of as a country where women work, the reality is that most women in the country work in the informal sector, where many women are left out of the formal workforce, leaving them at the mercy of their bosses and employers.
“When you work in a family restaurant, you might see a woman working in the kitchen and it’s hard to know what to make of it,” Vyavs said.
“When you go to a shop and see a lady there, you don’t have the expectation that she’s doing the job that you think she is.
The same is true for working in an office or a hotel.
There’s a perception that a woman’s place is in the office or in a hotel, and that’s just not the case.”
The report found that in India as a whole, the gender wage gap has narrowed over the past three decades, but that the gap still exists.
Women have become more educated, but in the private sector, they still tend to work in lower-paid jobs and are more likely to face sexual harassment, discrimination and abuse.
But women in many sectors are not the only ones to be affected by sexual harassment in India; there are also problems within the public sector too.
In the city of Hyderabad, for example, a group of women workers had to fight to have a public meeting on gender equality.
One of the women in this group, Bibi Lal, said she was hired by a multinational company in Hyderabad in 2006.
Lal, who is the head of a private NGO called Durga Kisan Sangharsh Samiti, told me she was one of the first women in her area to be hired by that multinational company.
Lal said that she had a bad working experience.
She was assigned to a job in the back of the building where there was an older male employee.
Lal told me that the man had told her, “I’ll take you back to the office,” and that she could work from there.
Lal described how, as she was walking out, the man pushed her against the wall and grabbed her breast.
She said that when she tried to fight him off, the older male male employee hit her on the head.
After this incident, Lal was fired and went to work for another company.
But Lal’s manager told her that she was fired for bringing attention to a complaint against a senior employee.
Eventually, Lal went to a human resources office to report the incident.
Lal’s manager asked her why she had come forward.
Lal replied, “To help me get the job back.”
Lals complaint led to a formal complaint against the company, which led to her being fired.
Lal’s former manager later filed a complaint with the police.
Lal said that in the years since her case, she has also been the subject of other harassment, including threats and rape.
Lal is also facing a police complaint against her for allegedly being a part of an attempt to cover up a sexual harassment case against her.
The situation with women in private sector is far from unique.
Women workers in India are also at risk of sexual harassment by their employers.
In February, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while addressing a gathering of the country’s largest companies in Mumbai, said that women are paid less than men in India because of the gender pay gap.
When asked whether that was because women work in low-paying jobs, Modi responded, “Yes, it is.”
The problem with that statement is that there is a gender pay difference in India too, with women earning on average about 10% less than their male counterparts.
While there are some exceptions, such as in India where men earn about twice as much as women, the pay gap is still wide.
According to a study published in December