BHUBANESWAR: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday sought an action taken report (ATR) within four weeks from Odisha government over sexual harassment of a postgraduate student in SCB Medical College and Hospital at Cuttack.
Acting on a complaint filed by rights campaigner Subash Mohapatra, the commission has sought an ATR from Health and Family Welfare Secretary and the SSP, Cuttack District.
The complainant has alleged that the victim, belonging to Scheduled Caste, a postgraduate student in SCB Medical College and Hospital has been sexually harassed by the HOD of Anaesthesia Department of the Hospital.
“The victim had written to the principal and superintendent of SCBMCH seeking action against the crime committed on her. Unfortunately, the authorities tried to pacify and attempted the tardy implementation of the guidelines of the Supreme Court. The committee issued a notice to the PG student asking her to appear before it on 24th February 2016, but her statement could not be recorded properly thereby violating the principle of natural justice”, Mohapatra said.
As per the victim’s complaint to Mangalabag police station, Dr Laxmidhar Das was booked under sections 354, 354 (A) and 354 (D) of the IPC.
In the meanwhile, he was released on a bail last Friday.
The victim had alleged that Dr Das had been subjecting her to sexual harassment for the last six months.
Notably, medicos of SCBMCH staged a protest rally inside the college campus on February 26 demanding ouster and arrest of Dr Das.
Hundreds of students participated in the protest and had threatened that they would intensify the agitation if stringent action is not taken against the accused.
Mohapatra sought the intervention of the rights panel for its direction to suspend the public authorities and invoke section 4 of the SC/ST POA Act; payment of interim compensation as per law; and submission of a status report on the sexual harassment of girl students in an educational institution of the state.