In a major blow to Punjab Engineering College (PEC) University of Technology, Chandigarh, its former director Manoj Datta and serving deputy director AM Kalra have been booked by for alleged sexual harassment of a woman faculty member.
The victim had lodged her first complaint to the university in 2010 against the then head of department and now deputy director Kalra. She approached the police in September 2012, but an FIR was registered on Thursday after the victim followed up the case with various police officials in the past one year.
The police registered a case under sections 354A (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty, 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) and 500 (defamation) of the Indian Penal Code at the Sector-11 police station.
In her complaint, the victim had alleged that Kalra had made obscene remarks towards her in front of colleagues on many occasions. She had also alleged that Kalra tried to gain proximity with her and when he failed, he harassed and threatened her.
She said that she had approached the then director Datta with her complaint in 2010, but no action was taken against Kalra. "Instead, I was advised by Datta not to make complaints against Kalra," she alleged.
"Kalra used his official position to implicate me in false cases, following which I was suspended on the charges of dereliction of duty in October 2010 and I joined back in July 2011," she further alleged.
"In March 2013, before leaving the institute, Datta passed a punishment order against me in the case," she said.
She also alleged that she had submitted her complaints on the issue to the board of governors of PEC, but they were not presented before them.
"I have been harassed to the hilt. I hope I get justice now," she said, adding that she was satisfied to the extent that finally she had been able to get an FIR registered against them.
The victim also said that she had approached the serving director Manoj Kumar Arora in October 2013 with her complaint. But, PEC didn't take any action.
Arora, Kalra and Datta could not be reached despite attempts.
Official spokesperson of PEC Sovina Sood said, "All I can say is that I am not aware that she made any complaint before the serving director. Matter will be looked into."
DSP (central) Ashish Kapoor said Datta and Kalra had been booked following the complaint lodged by the woman faculty member of PEC. Investigations were on and no arrest had been made so far.
How it started?
As per the complainant, she joined the institute in 2006 and lived alone in the city. Kalra was aware of the fact and started making advances towards her. She alleged that Kalra used to call her in his cabin when he was alone and made obscene gestures. She also alleged that he used vulgar words for her in front of colleagues. When she started protesting somewhere in 2009, he started harassing her. Finally, she made a complaint in 2010. But, that was the beginning of her ordeal.