Proof of two other TERI staff ignored

The Delhi Police refused to take on record material evidence of sexual harassment provided by two other female employees of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) against its former Director-General R.K. Pachauri in February this year, after the 29-year-old researcher came out with her complaint of sexual harassment, eminent lawyer Vrinda Grover told The Hindu.

In her letter to the Commissioner of Police B.S. Bassi on the matter, accessed exclusively by The Hindu, Ms. Grover has said that two more women employees of TERI had approached her with complaints of sexual harassment by Mr. Pachauri after the case of the sexual harassment and stalking of the 29-year-old researcher was lodged.

“Despite both these women willing to come forward with their complaints and placing material evidence of sexual harassment on record, the police refused to act on these complaints,” Ms. Grover told The Hindu.

Despite repeated attempts by The Hindu, DCP (South) Prem Nath could not be reached for comments on why he did not take further evidence against Mr. Pachauri into record in the ongoing investigation in the sexual harassment case. A senior police officer denied having received any other complaint against Mr. Pachauri or the existence of more than a single complainant against him. The officer did, however, say that action would be taken against him if more complainants stepped forward.

On February 26, Ms. Grover said she met Mr. Prem Nath and other officers investigating the sexual harassment case against Mr. Pachauri lodged by the researcher, which had been registered as FIR no.52/2015. “During the meeting, I told the police that taking on record material evidence provided by two more employees of TERI against Mr. Pachauri will strengthen the evidence of his guilt. He had repeatedly abused his position in TERI to sexually harass, intimidate and misbehave with these two other women,” she said.

Ms. Grover wrote a second letter on March 5, to the DCP (South) stating that the Delhi police commissioner had stated his commitment to swift action in the case of sexual abuse of women, yet, she received no response from the police on the cases of the two other women, she said. Frustrated due to the lack of response, on April 7, Ms. Grover wrote to Commissioner Bassi highlighting the matter but a response is yet to come, she said.

TERI’s Governing Council member Kiran Mazumdar Shaw told The Hindu that corrective action has been taken in the sexual harassment case now that changes had been effected at the helm, with Bureau of Energy Efficiency Director-General Ajay Mathur pronounced as R.K. Pachauri’s successor on Thursday.

In response to a question on the original victim in the sexual harassment case being deprived of a salary for two months as reported, Ms. Shaw said that with the new DG expected to take over soon, efforts would be made to restore the lost confidence of women employees in the organisation.

(With inputs from Jatin Anand in Delhi)

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Printable version | Jun 12, 2021 6:57:35 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/rk-pachauri-sexual-harrassment-case-proof-of-two-other-teri-staff-ignored/article7461611.ece

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