The University of Mysore is reviewing the measures in place for the safety of women on its campus in view of the outrage over the New Delhi gang-rape and a directive from the University Grants Commission (UGC) in this regard.
Acting Vice-Chancellor B. Shivaraj told The Hindu that he had not received any communication from the UGC on the issue, but said that he had learnt about the directive from media reports.
“Nevertheless, we will act on UGC’s suggestions and review the measures taken so far for the safety of women on the Manasagangotri campus here,” he said.
Prof. Shivaraj claimed that the campus had been “safe for students all these years” and “there has been no problem whatsoever”.
“There are about 500 girls in one hostel and nearly 150 in the working women’s hostel. Security guards keep watch over the premises,” he said. “A decision will be taken on the need to strengthen the security around the hostels.”
“Girls’ hostels are closed after 7 p.m. Hostel residents have been advised not to leave the premises after that, as the buildings are located in a secluded place inside the campus and there is no direct transportation arrangement,” he said.
Prof. Shivaraj said the university had deployed 25 guards inside the campus.
“The hostels are well protected with high walls,” he said, adding that two guards have been deployed at each hostel.
He said that a new committee had been constituted last year, to probe complaints of sexual harassment in the campus.
Meanwhile, R. Indira, Director of the International Centre, University of Mysore, said that in spite of complaint mechanisms in India for cases of sexual harassment of women, many cases did not come out at all for various reasons. “It is time that women are informed of their rights. An atmosphere should be created where women do not feel threatened after lodging complaints of sexual harassment. The complaints have to reach their logical end,” she said.