New Delhi: A female PhD student at the Jawaharlal Nehru University was allegedly dragged, forcibly undressed, and molested by an unknown assailant in the late hours of Monday evening.
Students who are currently taking care of the woman allege the incident took place between 11:30 pm and midnight, when she had stepped out for a walk on the ring road in the campus.
A case has been registered in the Vasant Kunj Police Station under the Indian Penal Code Section 354 (A and B), according to a press statement from Gaurav Sharma, DCP South West Delhi.
Subsection A covers sexual harassment while B is use of criminal force with woman with an intent to disrobe her.
The statement read, “On 18.01.22 at about 0045 hrs, a PCR call regarding molestation in JNU was received in PS Vasant Kunj North.”
Keeping in view the gravity of the matter, DCP Sharma said he, along with the SHO and staff of Vasant Kunj PS, immediately rushed to the spot.
“It was revealed that on the night of 17 January 2022 at about 11.45 PM, one girl student (name not to be disclosed), pursuing Ph.D. in JNU, was taking a stroll within the campus itself. When she was walking on the East gate road of the university, one boy came on a bike from inside campus and tried to molest her. The girl raised a hue & cry and the accused on his bike ran back within the campus itself. A case of outraging modesty has been registered and efforts are on to nab the accused,” the statement read.
The DCP later told ThePrint that the student had refused a medical examination.
Aishe Ghosh, president of the JNU Students’ Union, told ThePrint that according to the woman, she was stopped by a young man on a bike near the Vice Chancellor’s house. “He first passed lewd remarks and then later dragged her into the jungle, forcibly undressed her and tried to force himself on her,” Ghosh alleged.
When the woman continued screaming and fighting, the assailant allegedly snatched her phone and ran away, said Ghosh.
Students told ThePrint that the woman was found by campus security at midnight in a bad shape. She is currently in the campus hostel and has minor cuts and bruises.
“She is in an extremely poor condition right now and is still in trauma. However, she claims that she can identify the assailant if brought in front of her. And since our campus is residential, it could be just about anyone,” Aishe Ghosh added.
University yet to take action
Despite the incident taking place close to the Vice Chancellor’s residence, JNU is yet to take action.
When ThePrint approached Poonam Kumari, presiding officer of the JNU Internal Complaints Committee, over the phone, she stated she was “in a meeting” and disconnected the call.
ICC is the body in charge of addressing issues of sexual harassment against women on campus.
Poonam Kudaisya, the PRO of the institution, said she was yet to receive any directive from the university on the matter.
(Edited by Shreyas Sharma)