Eight female students of the prestigious Jawahar Lal Nehru university, Delhi, have filed complaint of sexual harassment against Professor and Head of Life Sciences department Atul Johri.
The case brings back memories of the famous Me Too movement spread virally in October 2017 as a hashtag used on social media to help demonstrate the widespread prevalence of sexual assault and harassment, especially in the workplace which followed soon after the public revelations of sexual misconduct allegations against Harvey Weinstein.
The Delhi police booked Professor Johri on charges of sexual harassment after eight female students lodged complaint against him at Vasant Kunj Police Station on Thursday late night.
At a press meet held on the campus, the women students of the SLS issued a statement that said, "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."
On Wednesday night, a 26-year-old student, who went missing and was later traced to her relative's house, had 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."
The screen shot of her complaint, which was marked to several other students, had gone around on social media and raised serious allegations against Prof Johri.
"A FIR under IPC section 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 Vasant Kunj North police station against Professor Johri. He will be called for questioning," said Milind Dumbre, DCP (South West).
They added that they have asked the woman to appear before the investigating team and record her statement. The matter is under investigation.