The controversy surrounding St Stephen’s College escalated on Thursday with the college accusing Devansh Mehta -- the editor of e-zine magazine which was banned by the principal -- of allegedly having trespassed and vandalised the college chemistry lab.
According to Stephen’s principal Valson Thampu, the incident happened when Mehta and the research scholar who had filed a sexual harassment complaint against the college bursar “barged” into the chemistry lab.
“I was told that the sexual harassment complainant and Mehta barged into the chemistry lab thrice. During their second visit, there was a tussle between Mehta and one of the research scholars. We do not know why Mehta came with the complainant but the incident indeed has occurred,” said Thampu over the phone.
Mehta, on his part, accepted that he had gone to the college but denied having been involved in vandalism of any kind.
“This is the first time that an ex-student has been charged with trespassing in his own college. There was never any vandalism in the lab. In fact, I never adhere to violence in any form. All this is being done to jeopardize my Columbia admission. We have all the events recorded on a camera and they are for the public to see and confirm that there was no vandalism. There was only a verbal altercation,” he said.
Both the parties have filed a complaint. But since it makes for no criminal offence no FIR has been registered by the police.
The college had issued a statement saying that Delhi Police is investigating the matter.
According to Mehta, he had accompanied the complainant (the PhD student) so that she could check the state of her research experiments in the lab.
The complainant, meanwhile, has filed another complaint saying that she was not being paid her stipend for the past several months.
“The stipends may be delayed because the bursar has not been in college, but the alleged charges made by the complainant are baseless,” Thampu said.