A rally to promote a sexual-harassment free campus was held at Delhi University (DU) on Friday. The rally, organised by the Safe University Campaign, aimed to create awareness about sexual harassment as a widespread problem on DU’s campuses. Campaigners also demanded that the Vice Chancellor (VC) Deepak Pental, and the sexual harassment complaints committees, set up under Ordinance XV (D), should be more proactive. This Ordinance was legislated six years ago, along with DU’s Policy on Sexual Harassment, to act as safety mechanisms against sexual harassment on campus.
Students and other campaigners marched from the Faculty of Arts to the VC’s office, stopping in eight colleges on the way, placards in hand, asking other students to join them.
80% of sexual harassment victims in DU seek help from friends and family, rather than approaching the sexual harassment complaints committees, found a survey conducted by one of the Campaign’s organisers Stree Adhikar Sangathan. 82% of students also thought that sexual harassment was a major problem in North Campus, the survey found. “There is so much campaigning on ragging, but [this is] not so for sexual harassment,” said Garima Das, a 3rd year student at Miranda House, who took part in the rally.
While the VC was unavailable, the campaigners met with the Dean of Colleges, Nayanjot Lahiri, who asked them to meet with her next Friday, after she discusses this issue with the VC.