BCCI's new policy of 'Prevention Of Sexual Harassment' extends its scope including cricketers and many others

BCCI’s new policy of ‘Prevention Of Sexual Harassment’ extends its scope including cricketers and many others

Apart from cricketers, the policy applies to the BCCI office-bearers, IPL Governing Council, and Apex Council members.

BCCI IPL Bihar
A view of logo of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). (Photo by Aniruddha Chowhdury/Mint via Getty Images)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) formally announced the comprehensive Prevention Of Sexual Harassment (POSH) policy. This policy will include provisions and rules which also bring the Indian cricketers into its scope. Apart from cricketers, it will also apply to several other personnel associated with Indian cricket. 

Until now, the board didn’t have anything specific laid out in order to deal with the sexual harassment matters. The policy which has now come into play will be applicable to office-bearers, IPL Governing Council, and Apex Council members as well. All the cricketers from the U16 level to the senior level will undergo this. 

The new reforms have also identified what actually comes under sexual harassment. The BCCI gave a nine-page document, as the Times of India reported. In the report, the board has mentioned that an Internal Committee (IC) consisting of four members will be formed. Their role will be to investigate sexual harassment complaints. 

The BCCI though have not named the members who will be part of this and are expected to announce them soon. The policy read, “The presiding officer of the IC shall be a woman employed at a senior level at the Workplace. 2 members of the IC will be selected from among the employees, preferably who are committed to the cause of women or have experience in social work or have legal knowledge.”

BCCI will also take recommendations from ICC on cases

The policy further read, “1 member of the IC will be selected from a Non-Governmental Organization or association committed to the cause of women or a person familiar with issues relating to sexual harassment (“External Member”). At least one-half of the members of the IC will be women.” 

Any complaint which will be filed under this policy needs to be done within three months of the incident. The IC will give seven days to the person who is accused to respond to whatever allegations are made. Then the respondent can take up to 10 days to respond further. BCCI will then take suggestions from the International Cricket Council (ICC) on this. 

ICC can submit their findings in 90 days, while then BCCI will have 60 days to act on it. If the person who has been accused is not happy with the verdict given by the BCCI, they can approach the court. The penalties include censure, counseling, community services, warning, fine loss of pay, loss of seniority, termination of employment among others.