In brief, the lady had raised a complaint on misappropriation of funds of the Alumina Association of the college to the college authorities. Her complaint was not investigated. She was transferred and later told not to come to work. She also alleged that a criminal complaint was filed by the college management against her son who was a student of the college. She filed an email complaint to the Police Commissioner and also complained to Tamil Nadu State Commission for Women . The Commission passed an order upholding her complaint and directing the college to pay her arrears of salary etc. amounting to 65 lakhs. College filed a writ petition seeking direction to quash the Commission Order and the lady had already filed a writ petition seeking reinstatement with back wages and to prosecute the college for not enquiring into her complaint of sexual harassment. Court heard both writ petitions and passed the following judgment:1. The lady had never complained on sexual harassment at any time to the college.
2. She only mentioned it for the first time in an email to the Police Commissioner that she was sexually harassed – no details given.
3. She was appointed on a contract basis and had passed the age of superannuation – she was 62 years at time of termination.
4. The Commission exceeded its authority – only Chairperson visited the college once without any members; heard the lady and passed orders straightaway in spite of College stating that the lady had already approached the High Court and matter is sub judice. Further, the Commission can enquire and recommend to the appropriate statutory for further action and cannot direct reinstatement, pay arrears etc.
5. Most important, the court concluded that there has been no case of sexual harassment and is only an afterthought. The main grievance of the lady pertains to misappropriation of funds and that being a contractual employee, cannot insist for employment beyond superannuation age of the service rules of the college.
6. The Court dismissed her writ and also quashed the orders of the Commission.
Download the judgement copy here: Madras HC – Mary Rajasekaran vs University of Madras (2 downloads)