Motherhood is a beautiful experience which is celebrated by all in the world. But, in today’s time, where some companies are only concerned about making a profit, they are being so insensitive that they are denying basic rights to pregnant women. A similar unfortunate incident happened with Radhika Gupta.
The 28-year-old Radhika Gupta was working with Radius Synergies International Pvt. Ltd, Noida for more than two years. All was going well until she asked for her rightful maternity leave.
Radhika was working as Assistant manager in Human Resource department there. Due to some complications in her pregnancy, she requested for maternity leave from September 1, 2016.
She told TYNews:
“I am only the HR in the company. I directly report to the Director. Initially, I had a verbal conversation about the maternity leave and it was fine. But, when the time came, and I applied for the leave, it was denied.”
Not only that she was denied maternity leave, she was also forced to resign. According to her, her employer told her that he can’t afford an employee on a leave for long.
Also, she told TYNews that she requested to shift her base in office from the second floor to ground floor. Even that was denied. She was met with such insensitivity at the workplace when she needed support the most.
Her husband said that due to all this pressure, Radhika’s blood pressure went down and she had to be admitted to a hospital.
When she refused to resign, she was given a termination letter just 45 minutes after she sent an official email requesting the leave.
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.
Despite everything, Radhika says she won’t give up her fight. She wrote a letter about the same to Ministry of women and Child Development, and PMO respectively.
Taking cognizance of her complaint, the WCD ministry is looking into the matter. Also, the state commission for women in Uttar Pradesh is actively pursuing the matter.
At times, when are we talking about extending maternity leave and also, discussing the option of paternity leave, Radhika’s ordeal is an eye opener.
Here’s her full story:
(With inputs from Rohit Upadhyay)