As much as 50 per cent of the 101 sexual harassment complaints filed in 16 educational institutions in the national capital since 2013 were from the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), data released by the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) on Wednesday revealed.
The commission also noted that the implementation of the Sexual Harassment at the Workplace Act, 2013 was flawed in many of these institutions.
According to the data received by the commission, the internal complaints committee of the JNU reported 51 cases of sexual harassment since 2013. JNU was followed by AIIMS with 10 complaints and Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) with nine.
Six of the complaints were still pending. Three of these were from IGNOU and the others were from IIT, AIIMS and Jamia Milia Islamia. Six of the 22 institutions in the capital reported no cases of sexual harassment.
”We did not notice a trend where the number of complaints filed over the years have gone up. We also observed the institutions have a tendency to quell the complaints,” said DCW chairperson Swati Maliwal.
The commission had, in August, written to 23 institutions in Delhi including the Jamia Millia Islamia, JNU, National Law University, National School of Drama (NSD), Delhi University (DU) and the IIT for details about cases of sexual harassment filed by students or university employees.
The DCW did not receive the data from DU. “Registrar of DU has been summoned for non-submission of data even after passage of almost four months on November 30, 2015,” the DCW said.
The commission sent summons and notices to the NSD and the Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University (GGSIPU) for flouting the provisions of the act.
The commission said, NSD had not appointed an external member of its complaints committee, while GGSIPU said the complainant had to approach the complaints committee within 15 days of an incident, even when the act gives the complainants three months.
”There is a need for uniform guidelines as we saw that every institution follows a different one. Some have an appellate authority while others don’t,” said Maliwal.
”A follow-up letter has been sent to University Grants Commission (UGC) and Ministry of HRD for framing uniform guidelines under the said act,” the DCW said.
Maliwal said the commission will interact with students and teachers in educational institutions and frame recommendations to be made to the Delhi government and the Centre over the next two to three months.