The complaint was filed by divisional engineer L Vijayalakshmi with the Tuticorin south police.

BSNL employees booked for sending smileys to woman colleague FIR stayed by Madras HC
news Court Friday, March 17, 2017 - 11:26

The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court on Thursday stayed an FIR filed against BSNL employees, including officials, for sending smileys on WhatsApp to a woman divisional engineer at BSNL, reported The Times of India.

The complaint was filed by divisional engineer L Vijayalakshmi with the Tuticorin south police. There is an official WhatsApp group for BSNL employees in Tuticorin. Vijayalakshmi sent a video to the group which was about the grievance of a customer, in return, she received ‘smiley’ replies from the other members in group. Moreover, she alleged that a man called Linga Bhaskar sent smileys to harass her.

A police complaint was registered against 49 BSNL employees under the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and the Information Technology Act, reported TOI. 

After an FIR was filed, the 49 BSNL employees moved to the High Court to squash the case. On Thursday, when the case came up for hearing, the judge said that the complaint cannot be included in any of the Acts stated. The advocate representing the 4 employees claimed that people have the right to express their views or feelings on social media and that is not harassment.

The woman had informed her department about the problem and proceedings were conducted and the concerned people were summoned. The advocate had added that there was no prima facie case in allegations and no FIR should have filed in the case, reported TOI.

 

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