Two days after a woman reporter of an English daily in Gurgaon accused a former colleague of sexual harassment, her statement was recorded before a magistrate on Monday afternoon.
The woman has also alleged that three reporters from other publications colluded with the accused with the “design of harassing, maligning, and defaming” her.
“The complainant’s statement was recorded before a magistrate today. We are still trying to track down the four men who have been named in the FIR,” said inspector Kamlesh, SHO of the Women’s Police Station in Sector 51.
“Mobile phones of the accused are switched off, and the only addresses the complainant has provided are those of their offices. We are contacting the organisations to ascertain their residential addresses. The matter is being investigated,” she said.
In the FIR registered on Friday, the complainant alleged that her former colleague, who joined the organisation in July 2016 and was “asked to resign” in October last year, sexually harassed her on multiple occasions during the time they worked together.
“(The accused) has been harassing me inside the office and had repeatedly forced me to join office parties. I kept ignoring his advances and four times he held my hand and forced me to sit with him in his cabin, but when I refused, he threatened to complain against me to my seniors and said he will make sure that the company sues me. He intentionally took revenge during the appraisal period and mentioned bad feedback,” the woman alleged.
She also alleged that on three occasions in January last year, the accused “molested” her inside the office building, touched her inappropriately and asked her to “hug him” in the cabin.
“In October 2018, he was asked to resign… and after that started defaming me on Twitter and Facebook… On November 2018 he uploaded my telephonic conversation with another reporter… without my consent. He asked the reporter to record my voice and hand it over to him through his friend, another journalist,” states the complainant, who has named this particular “friend” who allegedly helped “defame” her.
The other two accused, the woman alleged, were asked by her former colleague to spread a rumour alleging that a story she worked on was “fake”.
“I am not the reason for him losing the job as I never officially complained against him… This person, along with others, is either using fake accounts or asking his associates to send these messages with the common intention of harassing, maligning and defaming me,” alleged the journalist in her complaint.
The FIR in the matter has been registered under IPC sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 354A (sexual harassment), 354D (stalking), 500 (defamation), 505 (2) (statements conducing to public mischief), 506 (criminal intimidation), and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman), and Section 72 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.