Savitribai Phule Pune University Vice-Chancellor Wasudeo Gade suspended three staffers of the Chemistry department on Friday after sexual harassment charges were brought against them. He also referred the matter to the prevention of sexual harassment cell at the varsity.
According to Gade, some girls had initially brought the matter up before Chemistry department head Neelima Rajurkar in February. The girls had complained that the three male staffers, including a peon and two laboratory assistants, often passed lewd remarks and followed them and even stood outside the toilet when they used it.
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“A departmental level inquiry was conducted and the staffers were called. They apologised to the girls and even tendered a written apology. So the girls decided not to pursue the matter and withdrew the complaint. Since it was withdrawn, the department head did not notify the university administration about it,” said Gade.
However, on Thursday, a few other staffers from the Chemistry department who had later learnt about the incident approached Gade and demanded an explanation on how the three staffers were let off. Gade then asked the chemistry department about the matter.
“I studied the files and realised it was a serious issue of sexual harassment of women. I thought it would be appropriate to suspend the employees and referred it to the relevant committee to look into the matter. I have taken action as per rules,” said Gade.sexual harassment, SPPU university, university sexual harassment, pune news