Zero tolerance towards violence: JNU admin issues advisory asking for help with molestation case on campus

Calling it a "reprehensible incident", the advisory from the registrar's office said that they reiterate their resolve to ensure zero tolerance of such crimes
Representative Image (Pic: Express)
Representative Image (Pic: Express)

Almost three days after a PhD student of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) was allegedly molested on campus, near the Vice-Chancellor's residence, the administration has come out with a statement on the issue. They said that the administration, along with the security personnel, has been "coordinating with the police" and requested all those living on campus to inform the security or the police if they have any information related to the incident.
Calling it a "reprehensible incident", the advisory from the registrar's office emphasised on their resolve for zero-tolerance towards such crimes. "JNU administration with the security branch has been closely coordinating with the police in the process of investigation. In case of any information related to this incident, residents are advised to immediately intimate to the security branch or the police," said the notice.
The JNU administration reiterated its "resolve for zero tolerance towards any form of violence on campus" and added that they remain "committed towards providing a safer environment to all its residents on the campus". "While the investigation is going on, it is requested that all stakeholders remain vigilant," alerted the JNU administration.

READ ALSO : JNU PhD student who was walking on campus near VC's house molested by biker
The students, on the other hand, have been protesting since January 18. The JNU Students' Union (JNUSU) and a few left organisations took out a protest march on January 18 to the Vasant Kunj Police Station and gave the police and the administration a deadline of 40 hours to nab the culprit. They also took out another march from the Sabarmati Dhaba and have another one planned on January 21 at the new police headquarters at Patel Chowk. The ABVP unit of JNU also protested on campus on January 18 and demanded speedy investigation along with more security guards and CCTV cameras across the campus.
What happened that day?
The incident happened around 11.45 pm when the woman was out for a walk after dinner near the Vice-Chancellor's residence, said JNU Students' Union President Aishe Ghosh. "The girl, who is a final-year PhD student, was out for a walk after dinner. She was near the VC's house when the man approached her. She had her earphones plugged in and thought that he might be looking for directions. As soon as she unplugged the earphones, he came right up to her and said that he wanted to have sex with her. He was drunk and before the girl could react, she was dragged off the road. He tore off her clothes and was unbuttoning himself, she started crying and pleading. The man left hurriedly but took her phone with him," said Aishe. The girl was found sitting on the road by a patrolling van of the JNU security. "This happened 10 minutes later when the van reached the spot during their regular patrols. The wardens were alerted and we also went to the spot," said Aishe.
A case was filed under IPC 354A (sexual harassment), 354B (assault on women, disrobing women), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint) and 379 (theft). The students have reiterated multiple times that this is not a case of molestation, but attempted rape.
What are the profs saying?
The JNU faculty too expressed their concerns about the security on campus. They highlighted not one, but two incidents that happened on January 17.
The JNUTA (JNU Teachers' Association) on January 19 said that the environment on campus was deteriorating rapidly "with respect to security in general and that of women in particular". "In the second incident, a JNU female student was harassed, abused and beaten by a male student for not accepting his advances of friendship. What is also shocking is that the harassment in this particular case by the male student has been going on for the past two years," said the JNUTA in a statement.
The teachers said that the security lapses were "a direct result of the administrative incompetence and general misogyny of the JNU administration". The students and teachers have repeatedly claimed that the dismantling of the Gender Sensitisation Committee Against Sexual Harassment (GSCASH) is the root of the increasing number of crimes against women on campus.

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