PhD student alleges sexual harassment by IIT-Bhubaneswar professor

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PhD student alleges sexual harassment by IIT-Bhubaneswar professor
PhD student alleges sexual harassment by IIT-Bhubaneswar professor

Bhubaneswar : A PhD student of IIT-Bhubaneswar has levelled sexual harassment allegations against a senior professor of the institute, prompting the Odisha government to inquire into the matter.

The victim, who belongs to West Bengal, on Saturday alleged that her husband, who is also pursuing PhD from the same institute, has also been mentally tortured by the same professor.

The victim has filed a written complaint before the institute authorities and has submitted its copy to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

Deputy Secretary of the Skill Development and Technical Education Department P.K. Sarangi has sought an immediate report from the IIT Director after the woman sent a notice to the IIT Director through her lawyer in this regard.

As the victim was the only girl student pursuing PhD under the professor, he started abusing her sexually and mentally by touching her body many times during the class, said her lawyer M. Pratap.

After one year, two more students including a male student were enrolled in the PhD course under the professor. During the course, the woman married the male student following which the professor tortured her husband mentally.

She also had to go through difficult situation created by the professor during her pregnancy.

She was asked to walk through the staircase up to the fourth floor in the institute in 2013. The professor tortured the woman and her husband both physically and mentally till 2016, the notice said.

The professor also persuaded the IIT authority to cancel her husband's PhD degree without any notice, said Pratap. The woman was being sexually harassed since 2012 and had approached the IIT authorities earlier.

But the reports of the Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) formed by the institute to look into her case did not satisfy her, her lawyer said.