The Syndicate of Karnatak University Dharwad (KUD) at its meeting here on Friday resolved to punish K.M. Hosmani, professor in the Department of Chemistry, who was accused of sexual harassment.

Vice-Chancellor H. B. Walikar said Prof. Hosmani would be punished as per the provisions of the Karnataka Universities Act. However, he did not disclose the nature of punishment. “A similar incident was reported in the university and the accused was punished many years ago. Based on the punishment given in that incident and as per the existing rules, the nature of punishment will be decided,” he said.

A Ph.D. student had accused Prof. Hosmani of harassing her for sexual favours. Following the complaint, the then Vice-Chancellor S.K. Saidapur ordered preliminary investigation by a three-member committee and removed the professor as her guide. Based on the committee’s report, he suspended Prof. Hosmani.

However, the accused filed a petition in the High Court, challenging his suspension and questioning the reasons for the guide being changed. He later withdrew the petition.

The varsity then appointed retired magistrate S.S. Hulgeri to probe the incident. He submitted the report in June after a yearlong inquiry, in whiuch 15 witnesses were examined.

Show-cause notice

The meeting has resolved to issue show-cause notices to J.S. Bhat, professor in the department of physics, and G. B. Nandan, professor in the department of political science, for allegedly issuing statements to the press with out obtaining prior permission from the higher authorities concerned.

Prof. Walikar said only the Vice-Chancellor and the Registrar (Evaluation) were authorised to issue statements to the press on matters related to the university. A circular had been issued in this connection to all the departments in 2011. Prof. Bhat and Prof. Nandan went to the press in violation of the rules. Both have made derogatory statements against the university.

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