The definition of sexual harassment varies depending on one’s cultural background, access to knowledge, and level of exposure. The aforementioned elements influence how a person perceives sexual harassment. What one person may consider sexual harassment another person may view as appropriate behaviour. The fact that anyone can experience sexual harassment, regardless of gender, in a school, college, office, home, coaching centre, or anywhere else, remains constant. Even though this is the case, statistics on the number of instances of sexual harassment of men are hard to come by for a variety of reasons. Gender-based violence was recognized as a violation of human rights in 1993 at the World Human Rights Conference in Vienna. Violence against women is defined by the United Nations as any act of gender-based violence that causes or is likely to cause physical, sexual, or psychological harm or suffering to a woman, including threats of such acts, coercion, or arbitrary deprivations of liberty, whether occurring in public or private life. The U.N.’s Special Report on Violence Against Women added state-sanctioned violence to this category in 1995[1].

Everywhere in the globe, people of any gender experience prejudice and discrimination based on the gender they identify as. However, despite laws specifically targeting women up till the present, it is still a problem for many women in India. In harsh reality, men, lesbians, gay men, transgender guys, and queer people are also the targets of such prejudice.


As we all know people always say that our society is male dominant society. Women do not get their place in society because of restrictions upon them imposed by men. But with the changing time as women became independent, they try to escape from all the traps and started to fight back for their rights. Society also accepted their development and growth with welcoming hands. In ancient times, husbands served as the wives’ deities. While waiting for their men to come home from the war alive, wives observed fasts. Even then, as they believed their lives to be meaningless without their spouses, the wives would sate themselves in the fire of their martyred husbands’ funerals. Wives were devoted to their spouses in such a way. It is easy to conclude that women’s lives in the early days of civilization were no better than those of slaves.

However, because they were contextual, such references to the Bible could be taken as misrepresenting the position of women in society. The wife had full legal rights and frequently took part in religious rituals alongside her husband. The status of women was not low during the Vedic era. In terms of social and religious rights, they had enough rights. According to the Ramayana, women’s faces are like flowers, and their words are like drops of honey, but their hearts are like sharp razors, and no one can see them. It is also believed that women are the source of all evils in the Mahabharata[2].

In general, women abuse the legal system to get revenge on their husbands or other males. This is what is referred to as blatantly exploiting the law and her position against males, which ultimately infringes on men’s rights. Women are infringing on men’s rights out of ego.


The state is given the authority to create specific provisions for women and children under Article 15(3) of the Indian Constitution[3]. India’s rape laws were developed with women in mind in this regard. Today, however, since the same crime is frequently committed against people of various genders, it is necessary to modernize rape laws in a victim-centred manner. By doing this, victims of other genders can likewise seek redress within the current legal system. Additionally, taking such action won’t violate Article 15(3) because it won’t compromise the protections for women but rather only broaden the application of Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code[4] to include other genders.

One of the wonderful pillars of Indian democracy is equality. The “concept of equality” is acknowledged as a component of the fundamental framework of the Constitution in the preamble. The fundamental idea of equality is embodied in Article 14 of the Constitution[5]. An appropriate classification is allowed, but class-based regulation is not. As a result, Article 14 permits individualized care for various classes by their need. In Abdul Rehman v. Pinto[6], the Supreme Court explicitly ruled that “similar treatment under unequal circumstances would amount to inequality.”

The exact way in which the general rule outlined in Article 14 is to be applied is outlined in Article 15. Article 15’s clause (3) is an exception, though. It gives the state the authority to provide unique protections for women and children.


The expectations of how a man and woman should behave are rather stiff in our society. Men are expected to be powerful, uninjured, and able to defend themselves. The likelihood that someone will make fun of a man when he discloses sexual harassment by another person or working in a hostile workplace is also very high. It is demanded of them to “man up,” “act like a man,” and “not cry.” Men who have suffered sexual harassment go through the same emotional anguish as a woman would, but because of the toxic masculinity that our society still upholds, they also have to deal with stereotypes[7].

Another factor is that many people do not understand what it means for a man to be the victim of sexual harassment. People tend to believe that a woman could never be the person responsible for a sexual harassment claim. Male harassers often doubt their own experiences because they refuse to acknowledge that males are susceptible and believe that women can never be harassers. Many guys are unsure if the behaviour they experienced was harassment. They are also concerned that because “women do not harass,” their complaints won’t be taken seriously. Contrary to what the scant data indicates, though. Contrary to what the scant data indicates, though. According to a poll by the Economic Times, which asked respondents in different cities about their experiences with sexual harassment at work, between 29 and 43 per cent of respondents said that they had been harassed by female coworkers[8].


Organizations might start by gender-neutralizing their Prevention of Sexual Harassment (POSH) Policy. This makes it possible for anyone to report sexual harassment at work. Even while the POSH Act isn’t gender-neutral in and of itself, this doesn’t mean that an organization can’t have a gender-neutral POSH policy. Companies with gender-neutral POSH policies might use the Code of Conduct policy to address grievances brought forth by employees of various genders. The other successful strategy for preventing sexual harassment of men is creating sensitivity and awareness. Regularly hold pieces of training that address sexual harassment as a crime against anyone, not just women.  Some businesses will have a POSH (Prevention of Sexual Harassment) Policy that is gender-neutral and accepts complaints from anyone. In these organizations, males can file complaints about sexual harassment with the Human Resources division, which will treat the situation as a breach of the organization’s Code of Conduct policy. Even while this is not the same as taking legal action, it is a step in the right direction to end their suffering.


An analysis of the current situation shows that India is used as a source, a transit country, and a final destination for male sexual harassment. The problem is made even more complex, multi-layered, and multi-dimensional by India’s protected, collaborative structure. Women frequently accuse men of wrongdoing by taking advantage of the specific laws protecting women. The number of women who frivolously make unfounded accusations against their husbands to divorce them or otherwise harm the family is increasing, as is the number of violations of section 498A of the IPC, its ambitions, and its objectives. The abuse of this provision is fast rising, and the frequently well-educated women who commit the crimes are aware that it is both cognizable and non-bailable and perform spontaneous works in response to the woman’s complaint.

Author(s) Name: Vaishnavi Krushna Parate (Shri. Nathmal Goenka Law College, Akola)


[1] Reach to the Peak: Gender Neutrality in Sexual Harassment Laws (Paper) | ProBono India (probono-India. in)> accessed on January 4, 2023

[2] Ibid

[3] Constitution of India, Art. 15(3)

[4] Indian Penal Code 1860, s 375

[5] Constitution of India, Art. 14

[6] Abdul Rehman v. Pinto [AIR 1951 Hyd 11.]

[7] Maya Srinivasan, ‘What are the Major Laws to Know Against Harassment of Men in India?’ (elearnposh, 24 June 2021)< > accessed on January 5, 2023

[8] Even men aren’t safe from sexual harassment at workplace: Survey, (economic times, 22 August 2010)< > accessed on January 21, 2023

error: Content is protected !!