A Ph.D scholar in Jawaharlal Nehru University has accused the University of sitting on her complaints of sexual harassment and promoting the interests of her molester. All this despite the Gender Sensitization Committee Against Sexual Harassment (GCASH) — an internal committee — finding her allegations true and prescribing a series of administrative penalties against the accused while directing him to pay a huge compensation to the victim.
The accused is a senior professor with the University and recently had his employment extended.
“One day, I went to my Pd.D supervisor of four years. I wanted around four chapters in my thesis to be approved by this Professor and suddenly, this man who had been extremely courteous to me all these years made physically sexual advances. I felt violated and informed my husband, and we decided to file a complaint in GCASH instead of a police station. That was around one-and-a-half years ago and after that this man with some of his colleagues and students sought to malign me and succeeded to such an extent that the GCASH has found him guilty about this too,” said the victim in a choked voice while speaking over the phone to The Hindu.
She says she has been ignored by the university completely and that during the past one-and-a-half years since the complaint was pending, that she has not been allotted an alternate Ph.D supervisor. The victim also alleged that only a change in the leadership in GCASH made her case go through, a complaint that is placed on record in the GCASH report.
“We are not sitting on the matter at all, the report is with the Executive Council, they have to look into the report and then take a decision,” Vice-Chancellor S.K. Sopory told The Hindu.
The victim claimed there are two charges that the GCASH has found true. One is the molestation incident and the other is that persons acting on the behest of the accused intimidated her to withdraw the case, she added.
According to the student, the GCASH has also recommended a series of actions, which the victim says the university has ignored. “For example, the GCASH has specifically directed the university to reject the professor’s application for an extension of his employment and also to not award him any privileges which has also been ignored,” she said.
The victim also said that her Ph.D has suffered irreparable damage. “So much time has passed that some of it has become irrelevant. Nobody contacted me for anything for these months and I didn’t know whom to contact. I was not given an audience with any of the administration people, ” she said.