COIMBATORE: The Bharathiyar University’s Head of the English Department, against whom a research scholar has filed a petition of sexual harassment, has denied the allegation, describing it as a blackmailing tactic to get the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree without satisfying the prescribed norms of the university.
“A research scholar has to do three years of research before submitting the synopsis and the thesis. She got registered for PhD under her guide on April 6, 2010. After a year, on July 4, 2011, her guide wrote to the university recommending cancellation of her registration as she did not came to the department regularly,” he said.
“After getting her explanation, her PhD registration was cancelled on February 22, 2012. During this duration of one and a half years, she came to the department only for 48 days and had 68 OD (other duty). On July 15, 2014, she approached the Vice Chancellor, asking him to allow her to continue the PhD research work on humanitarian grounds. The university allowed her to continue the research on March 24 this year,” he added.
He further said, “On, April 11 she asked permission to submit the synopsis, without completing the three-year research norm. With the vested interest of getting the PhD degree without satisfying the norms, she has now lodged the sexual harassment complaint, at the behest of four faculty members from the English and Linguistics departments,” he added.
“On June 22, as soon as I came to know about her complaint to the university authorities, I wrote to the Vice Chancellor, saying that she was making false accusations against me due to the influence of four faculty members and demanded a thorough inquiry and suitable action, including a police complaint,” the head of the department explained.
The other professor, whom the girl has accused of asking her to ‘adjust’, said he had done nothing wrong and was ready to face any inquiry.
“After listening to the research scholar, I had recommended to the Registrar to forward her complaint to the University Sexual Harassment Committee for further inquiry,” the professor said.