BENGALURU: A recent anonymous post by a student, claiming to be from Christ University, on sexual harassment he/she allegedly faced on campus has gone viral.
But students from many top colleges in the city say their campuses are free of such cases. This includes those from Christ University, who have mostly responded to this post with disbelief.
Skandashree Bali, a recent post graduate from the institution, says, “I studied in Christ University for seven years and I never came across such a situation. Nor did I hear of it.”
Bali believes that ‘such issues are hyped up’.
A current student says the accused faculty member is disliked by many. They might be trying to blacken his reputation, she suspects.
She admits to there being whispers about a ‘case long ago, involving a PU student’, but brushes it aside as a rumour.
An alumnus and faculty at IIPR Madiwala jumps to the defensive.
“There is no perfect institution. It is injustice to just concentrate on a few flaws and discredit the good work that the varsity has been doing,” he says.
The alumnus is certain that the ‘institute will engage the students in dialogue and address their grievances’.
Meghana H R, a faculty member at Mount Carmel College (MCC), says measures are being taken to prevent harassment on campus.
“We have put up posters against ragging on the premises. We also have a counselling centre to boost the morale of distressed students,” she adds.
A second-year English Literature student at the college says, “There were several rumours of sexual assault by senior girls on juniors. But we haven’t seen this happening and no one reported such a case to the college authorities.”
Abhigale D’Cruz from the Jain School of Graduate Studies says, “In my college, there have been no reports of harassment so far. Our psychology department has trained counsellors and a special counselling centre, Kalarava.”
Harsha Priya, an undergraduate student at NMKRV College For Women, says there have been no cases in the recent past.
“We have a gender sensitisation cell, and an anti-ragging helpline,” she adds.
According to an official statement by Christ University, there have been no complaints related to harassment so far.
“We follow the UGC guidelines, and will take immediate action in case of such incidents,” says Fr Biju K C, coordinator, Department of Media Studies, Christ University.
But an incident occured a couple of years ago. On this, a university admin staff says, “There was an internal inquiry, and the accused was suspended. But later, we found that the accusations were not valid.”
The police, he adds, are continuing the investigation. “The grandmother of the accused passed away on the very next day after hearing about this. Upset by the turn of events, the faculty member resigned,” he adds.
Yashas P Ravi, a post-graduate student of Mass Communication from Central College, says he has not heard of harassment cases in the college.
“Disciplinary action is taken against those found misbehaving on the premises,” he adds.
Meghana, a student of journalism at Surana College, says, “Our college feels like home! There is no ragging.”
Claret College, CMR University, National College and MS Ramaiah also claim not to have witnessed harassment cases of any kind.