St Stephens prof in sex abuse case

St Stephens prof in sex abuse case

A group of St Stephens alumni on Saturday demanded Delhi University vice-chancellor (V-C) Dinesh Singh’s intervention in the sexual harassment case filed against a professor of the college. 

“(Valson) Thampu has indulged in grave impropriety unbecoming of a principal. Thampu’s tenure is replete with instances of illegalities and misdemeanours. We demand him to immediately step down as principal, failing which the Supreme Council should sack him,” a statement by the Association of Old Stephenians said.

The association has also asked the V-C to order a probe not only in this case, but all old cases of sexual harassment. 

On Friday, a PhD student of St Stephen’s College filed a complaint of sexual harassment against a professor, while accusing Thampu of trying to protect the faculty member when the matter was brought to his notice. 

According to the complaint, chemistry professor Satish Kumar molested the victim on October 15, 2013. The student has also accused him of stalking her, passing lewd remarks, making inappropriate physical contact, and threatening to “pour sulfuric acid on her if she didn’t wear a yellow sari to college.”

Delhi University Teachers’ Association president Nandita Narain condemned the incident and asked the college probe committee to follow the “proper inquiry procedure”. 

She said the accused, who is also the bursar, should have been asked to step down before the launch of an inquiry against him. 

Delhi Commission for Women chief, Barkha Shukla Singh said: “It is such a prestigious college and it is shameful if anything like this has happened. The matter should be investigated and the guilty should face action.”

Meanwhile, a statement issued by the college read: “Such a complaint was duly and promptly forwarded by the principal to the Internal Complaints Committee and an inquiry, following proper procedure, is underway and nearing completion.”

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