The Delhi Police have booked a Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) professor after women students levelled allegations of sexual harassment and financial irregularities against him.
The professor,Atul Johri, works at the School of Life Sciences (SLS) department.
At a press meet held on the university campus, the women students of School of Life Sciences (SLS) department issued a statement saying, “The professor often makes sexually-coloured remarks, open demands for sex and comments on the figure of almost every girl. If a girl objects, he holds a grudge against her.”
Another statement issued by the students said, “There is a financial nexus between the professor and the administration. No instrument has been purchased for years, but still crores of rupees have been spent.”
Johri, a vocal supporter of the university administration’s compulsory attendance initiative, claimed that he was being targeted for his stand on the issue.
An integrated M Phil and PhD course student from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) who had been reported missing for the last four days, and who later traced her relative’s house, had also sent an e-mail to the professor, saying, “I am leaving your so-called prestigious lab, just because you are a characterless person and have no manners when it comes to talking to girls.”
Denying the allegations, Johri said, “Some girls, who have levelled the allegations against me, had received a mail from me on February 27 regarding their irregular attendance in the lab. So, they are targeting me.”
Johri said he was being targetted for asking the girls to abide by the attendance requirement, adding that no complaint was filed against him with the University’s Internal Complaints Committee either.
As per a news report in The Hindu, the Delhi Police have received a complaint against the professor and an FIR under IPC sections 354 (Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 509 (Word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) has been filed at the Vasant Kunj North police station against professor Johri.
The police have asked girls, who have levelled the charges, to appear before the investigating team and record their statements.
A probe has been launched into the matter.
(With agency inputs)