Noida-based company denies maternity leave to pregnant employee; asks her to resign
Noida, July 21: At a time when the Indian government is making efforts to make the journey of pregnant working women, a smooth one, a Noida-based private company meted out a shocking treatment to one of its pregnant employee.
The incident happened with one Radhika Gupta, a 28-year-female employed with Radius Synergies Pvt. Ltd, from last two years. The company is located in Sec-63, Noida.
Due to certain pregnancy complications, she asked her company to grant her maternity leave before the expected delivery date. [26-week maternity leave for women employees soon in private sector]
The company, instead of understanding her health problems, forced her to resign immediately.
On July 4 this year, Radhika sent an email to the company's Director saying:
As you are aware that my doctor has advised me complete bed rest due to some medical complications in my pregnancy, so I would like to apply for my medical leaves till my maternity leaves start i.e. from 1st September, 2016.
During this period, I will be available over the phone as well as on emails for important official work so that work does not get hampered.
Attached herewith are supporting medical documents from my consulting doctor.
Radhika was working as an Assistant Manager- HR in the company and was directly reporting to the Director. She joined the company in May 2014.
She said that she had informed verbally about her maternity leave plans but when the time came, she was denied to take leaves. [Paid maternity leave can lead to better infant health]
She was told that her company cannot afford an employee on leave for a long time. Then, she was sent a mail of "termination from service" and to respond it within 45 minutes.
Radhika, who was left with no choice, wrote a letter to the Ministry of Women and Child Development and to the PMO, where she narrated her ordeal. The WCD Ministry is investigating the matter. The state commission for women in Uttar Pradesh has also taken up the sensitive matter.
While talking to Topyaps, Radhika said that she requested to shift her base in office from second floor to ground floor for her convenience, but it was also denied.
He husband also complained that due to office stress, Radhika's blood pressure dropped to a low and she had to be admitted in a hospital.
Under the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, an employee is entitled to 12 weeks maternity leave. Under section 21 of the Act, if an employer doesn't do so, he is punishable with imprisonment.