JNU sexual harassment case: Students clash with police, demand arrest of professor
Nine women have accused a JNU professor of sexually harassing them.delhi Updated: Mar 21, 2018 08:18 IST
Hundreds of JNU students marched to the Vasant Kunj police station in south Delhi on Monday evening, demanding the immediate arrest of a professor accused of sexual harassment by several students. They overturned barricades on Nelson Mandela Marg and had scuffles with police.
After the protests, the statements of four complainants who had alleged sexual harassment by the professor were recorded.
The students were demanding that the accused professor be arrested and questioned immediately, the complaints be registered under separate FIRs, all complainants statements be recorded under IPC 164 before a magistrate and that IPC sections 354A and 354D, which deal with sexual harassment and stalking, in addition to the ones on “assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty” and “word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman,” be added in the FIR.
The Delhi Police had on Friday said that an FIR had been filed based on the first seven complaints received on Thursday, and the two complaints received on Friday would be bunched with them. They had also said that the teacher would be asked to join the probe on Monday, and record his statement.
Shubhanshu Singh, the joint secretary of the JNU Students Union (JNUSU), said only one of the complainants had been called to record their statement. He said the students tried breaking the barricades and also blocked the roads during their protests.
Singh later said four students had recorded their statements, and the others would do so on Tuesday. “The professor has also been called in on Tuesday, at around 2 pm. We may protest again on Tuesday demanding his arrest,” he said.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (southwest) Milind Dumbere confirmed that the teacher has been asked to come on Tuesday. “If he doesn’t meet us, we will send a team to bring him,” said the officer.
Hindustan Times is not naming the teacher, as the investigation is ongoing and a formal arrest has not been made yet. The professor did not respond to calls and messages sent by HT. Members of the administration were also unavailable to comment.
Earlier in the day, a group of 54 teachers submitted a letter addressed to DCP Dumbere, demanding that separate FIRs be filed, and the statements of all the complainants be recorded as well.
Dumbere said as of Monday there was only one FIR and a decision to register more on other complaints would be taken only after examining the other cases.
“We are likely to add more Indian Penal Code sections to the FIR as we proceed with the investigations,” said the DCP, refusing to share details of the other sections that may be applied.
He denied allegations that students were roughed up by the police while protesting outside the police station. “The policemen have not used force. Some students were getting aggressive and we had to control them,” he said.
The protests resulted in traffic snarls on the Nelson Mandela Marg, Asaf Ali Road and Rao Tula Ram Marg late Monday evening.
Meanwhile, the Delhi Commission for Women, who were approached by a delegation of JNU students, has also issued notices to the university registrar and the police. According to the notices, shared by a JNUSU office bearer, asks the police why the accused hasn’t been arrested yet, and asks the registrar about the safeguards taken, whether their internal complaints committee was looking into the matter, and whether there have been complaints against the teacher in the past.