Published: 08th February 2024
Odisha: Sexual harassment allegations spark protests at EMRS, Malkangiri
Initially, the victim remained silent out of fear, but she eventually found the courage to disclose the incident to her classmates, triggering the campus-wide protest
Protests erupted at Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS), Malkangiri on Tuesday, February 6, following accusations of sexual harassment against a teacher by a female student, reports The New Indian Express.
The report states that there was a lot of tension on campus due to students staging a dharna. They were demanding justice for the victim and action against the accused teacher. According to the protestors, in December of the previous year, five students — four of which were girls — along with the teacher, had travelled to Mayurbhanj for kabaddi and kho kho practice sessions. This was in preparation for a sports competition that was going to take place in Karnataka.
Upon the cancellation of the Karnataka event, the group returned to Malkangiri by train after spending approximately 15 days in Mayurbhanj. It was during this train journey that the teacher allegedly molested one of the female students, states the report.
Initially, the victim remained silent out of fear, but she eventually found the courage to disclose the incident to her classmates, triggering the campus-wide protest.
On being informed, police rushed to the campus and held discussions with the agitating students. Malkangiri Model Inspector-In-charge (IIC) Rigan Kindo said police are waiting for an FIR to be lodged in this connection after which investigation will begin. The accused teacher, meanwhile, has reportedly gone into hiding following the protest.
As per TNIE, Malkangiri collector Sachin Pawar assured that the district welfare officer (DWO) visited the school and initiated a probe into the matter. If the allegations are substantiated, those responsible will face consequences.
DWO Prafulla Kumar Bhujabala affirmed that an inquiry is underway and assured that a report will be promptly submitted to the district collector.