Jadavpur University student Sushil Mandi, who went missing after he was allegedly “publicly shamed” on social media, was found by police and brought back to Kolkata from Mecheda in East Midnapore on Monday. Sushil, an MPhil student, had gone missing on February 2, four days after he was “shamed” on social media for allegedly sexually harassing a girl during a student campaign on campus, according to sources. He had left behind most of his belongings, including his phone, according to his family.
WATCH WHAT ELSE IS IN THE NEWS
“Jadavpur police officers found him on Monday at about 11.30 am, based on a tip-off. We are interrogating him. He has so far revealed that he left campus as he was feeling depressed because of the allegations made against him,” said Bandana Varun Chandrashekhar, DC, South Suburban division.
Police sources said he had been taking shelter at a slum area in the district. On February 4, police had registered an FIR against five students — Soumya Mondal, Dibyakamal Mitra, Koustav Mondal, Nabottoma Pal — under sections pertaining to defamation, abduction and SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. The complainant — his brother Haradhan Mandi — alleged that Sushil had been humiliated and slammed on social media because of his tribal background.
Student groups Radical and United Student’s Democratic Front (USDF) had joined hands ahead of JU student council elections and conducted a campaign on January 16, during which they broke the locks of ladies’ washrooms located on university grounds. It was alleged that university authorities used to lock up these washrooms so no girls stayed late at the university.
After the campaign, Mondal — who does not belong to either student group — had posted on social media, alleging she had been molested by a Radical member during the campaign. However, she did not name anyone in particular or lodge a formal complaint with police.
The USDF, on the other hand, accused Mandi of sexual harassment and publicly shamed him after the student council election.
Radical had hit back at the USDF, pointing out that the girl had not named Sushil, and accused it of targeting him because of his “tribal background”.