The central government is currently in the process of serving notices to as many as 2,690 companies for not including at least one female member on their boards.

"Show-cause notices are being sent to the companies," said the government in a reply obtained under the Right to Information Act.

While 10,328 companies, registered under the Companies Act, 2013, were asked to appoint at least one woman director pn their board by April 1, 2015, only 74% of them have followed the law so far.

"However, the law does not prescribe any specific penalty at this stage," Business Standard quoted Harish H V, partner - India Leadership team, Grant Thornton India LLP, as saying.

A public company, with a paidup share capital of Rs 100 crore or above or having a turnover of Rs 300 crore or more, should have included at least one female on its board by 1 April, according to the act.

"The usual reasons (behind not appointing women directors) are that there are no appropriate women who could be taken on board. One should also look carefully at the numbers. It is clear that 75 per cent have implemented the law. One should examine how many of these companies that did not implement are operating fully and adhering to the other provisions, preparation of accounts, filing of returns, etc," Harish added.

In April, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had announced a minimum Rs 50,000 penalty on companies not complying with the law. The market regulator even warned of taking action on promoters and directors of the companies which do not adhere to the law beyond six months.

As per the Sebi order, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) had fined 370 listed companies in October.

"It is quite possible that many of the companies which did not adhere to the law are also defaulters on other counts due to operating issues, losses or other factors. There will of course be some wilful defaulters among them," said Harish.

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