New Delhi, 23 July
The Hindu College hostel warden has accused the institution’s alumni of subjecting her to sexist abuse and demanded an inquiry into a party organised in the college on 13 July by the Association of Hindu College Hostel Alumni (AHHA) for raising funds for the Uttarakhand disaster victims.
The warden, Dr Poonam Sethi, said after the hostel committee refused to allot rooms to AHHA for their party, she became the victim of their abuse on a social networking site, Dr Sethi said their comments included, "Why should a lady be appointed warden of a boys’ hostel…. a boys’ hostel must have a male warden….. we know how to keep women happy. Is it not the time principal should take charge of hostel now". Dr Sethi alleged that the Hindu College premises had been converted into a drinking den in the name of the alumni meet for the last two years.
"The AHHA had asked the college hostel committee to offer 10 rooms for the meet, which was refused considering past experience of their drinking during the programme. However, the officiating principal of the college allowed permission to the meeting (in the college auditorium) promoting wine culture in an academic institution," Dr Sethi said. She added, "The principal wrote to me to undertake appropriate steps in my capacity as warden to ensure that no trespassing of the hostel steps takes place, as if hostel and college are two independent bodies."
Arvind Chaudhary, a member of the Hindu College hostel committee, said there are five members in the committee. "Suchitra Gupta, Atul Gupta, Piyush Mishra, Poonam Sethi are members. We unanimously opposed the hostel premises being used for the programme but the college Principal allowed them." Mr Chaudhury added, "We also question the college authorities on what ground the ex-warden of Hindu College, Mr Chandrachur Singh, who promoted wine culture in the campus, has been occupying accommodation in the college." Dr Sethi said when the hostel committee refused access to the hostel premises some of the alumni of the college and members of AHHA abused her on social networking site Facebook. She showed some of the comments posted against her: "Hindu College hostel sealed …. by a lady warden. What a shame….even the virgin tree will mind it. Is it not the time Principal should take the charge over this hostel issue?," Another comment read, "But I am sure if we had a lady warden in our times she would have been happiest, most satisfied women on earth…. present hostelers should know the real cause of her getting so pissed off. We know how to make women happy, lol."
Dr Sethi said on 13 July the function was organised in the college auditorium and the library lawn from 4 to 8 p m, in the presence of the officiating principal. She alleged that the party turned into a drinking session. She claimed that she had texted the college principal to stop the drinking immediately but he switched off his mobile phone thereafter. The warden has questioned the AHHA’s announcing a contribution of Rs 10 crore to the Uttarakhand relief fund. "It is a matter of enquiry how this money has been raised, if at all, and where has the money been deposited?" she said.
Dr Sethi said that she felt hurt, anguished and traumatised by the action of the principal and the organiser of the event and demanded action against them so that such incidents do not recur. She has written to the university vice chancellor, , President of India, Chief Justice of India, UPA chairperson, HRD minister, Delhi chief minister and others for their intervention in the matter.