31 Jan, 2022 9:46a.m.

SBI withdraws order making pregnant women ‘temporarily unfit’ for recruitment


On Saturday, the State Bank of India revoked a circular declaring pregnant women "unfit" for employment.

According to the earlier SBI circular issued on December 31, if a candidate is pregnant for more than three months, she will be regarded temporarily unsuitable and may be allowed to return to work within four months after the child's birth. The candidate will be judged fit if she is pregnant for less than three months, according to the circular.

The State Bank of India (SBI) retracted its controversial circular mandating new limitations on recruitment of pregnant women on Saturday, following considerable criticism from various sources, including a notice from the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW).

"In light of public sentiments, SBI has decided to put the revised instructions regarding the recruitment of pregnant women candidates on hold and continue with the existing instructions in the matter," the bank said in a statement.

The SBI stated that it has evaluated the bank's different fitness standards for recruitment, including the requirements for pregnant women.

“The revised guidelines were intended to provide clarity on various health parameters where instructions were not clear or were very old. In some sections of the media, the revision in norms in this regard has been interpreted as discriminatory against women.”

“SBI has always been proactive towards the care and empowerment of its women employees who now constitute around 25% of our workforce. During the COVID period, as per Government instructions, pregnant women employees were exempted from attending office and allowed to Work From Home,” it reads.

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