IIT-Madras’s administration will soon issue an advisory to both students and professors on a ‘code of conduct’ on campus, to be followed during cultural festivals and on academic tours.
This was decided at a meeting on the campus on Tuesday, in the aftermath of the suspension of a professor for sexually harassing a student. According to sources, the complaint was filed by the student’s friend after she went on an academic tour to Europe with the professor.
“With our cultural and technical fests approaching, we want to make sure no one is made to feel uncomfortable on campus,” said L.S. Ganesh, dean (students).
He said the advisory will mainly deal with rules of conduct, particularly verbal and physical behaviour.
“We want to especially make sure no one, not even guests, passes comments that are sexist or in bad taste, ” he said. Last week, at the cultural festival of IIT-Bombay, pop music artiste Palash Sen was accused by a section of students of making sexist remarks on campus.
IIT-Madras’s advisory will be handed out to students and professors in about a week, just ahead of the festivals that begin in the first week of January. Strict instructions will also be issued to students and professors who are sent on any academic tours, Prof. Ganesh said.
Students on campus said news of the incident of sexual harassment and suspension of the professor came out during the holidays, and not many were aware of it.
“The administration did not care to apprise the student community of this development. Instead, we get to know about this from members of the press. The authorities should have at least mailed us about the action taken so that we feel empowered to complain when faced with such a situation,” said a student.