Yet another case of harassment has surfaced in Panjab University’s campus, which has been brought to the notice of PUCASH (Panjab University Committee Against Sexual Harassment) after submission of a complaint on August 24 by the student herself.
As per the complaint, on August 20, the student was supposed to wait for a colleague in the university but was running low on her phone’s battery so decided to stop by at the Botanical Garden to charge her phone around 4:25pm. Around 5:10pm she noticed a man hiding behind a tree completely naked and masturbating who tried to come towards her side. On noticing this, complainant grabbed her phone and hurriedly ran towards the gate only to hear the man shouting, “idhar aa, bag to lekar jayegi hi na”, who also followed her for a little distance. On reaching the gate she found it locked as it was past 5pm, by then she received a call from her colleague who reached the site within 10 minutes on hearing her crying. She managed to climb the gate to come out of the garden and asked for help from two boys who stopped after seeing her in a panicked state. The girl then returned with her friends to find the man and collect her belongings with others present there but they were unable to locate the man. An amount of 1500 rupees was missing from her wallet too. Even after informing the security guard of the garden no major actions were taken and she returned to her house that day.
On August 21, the complainant returned to the site with her friends to try and identify the man who turned out to be a gardener employed in the University. They called the police and PU security officers also arrived. She identified the man amongst the gardeners present there and submitted a complaint to the Chairperson of the Department and PUCASH.
As quoted by the student, “Due to this incident I’ve gone through a lot of trauma which has affected my health and studies lately. I could not let this incident go unreported as it would have turned into a threat for the security of other girls as well. I’ve lodged a complaint with PUCASH and expect them to take strict action against that man quickly and hand him over to the police. The actions against him should serve as an example for future so that such an incident doesn’t get repeated in the University premises.”
PUCASH is currently looking into the matter and a hearing has already taken place to record the student’s statement.
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