Three arrested in Visva Bharati sexual assault case

Kolkata, Aug 30 :

Three Visva Bharati University students were Saturday arrested in connection with the alleged sexual harassment of a female student from the northeast, West Bengal police said.

“We have arrested three students named in the first information report (FIR). We have pressed charges of criminal intimidation and outraging the modesty of a woman among others,” Birbhum district police superintendent Alok Rajoria told IANS over phone.

Earlier in the day, the university founded by Asia’s first Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore in Bolpur town, suspended the three accused and lodged a police complaint following an internal probe into the incident.

The fine arts female student from Sikkim was allegedly sexually assaulted earlier this week by some of her seniors, who even recorded the assault to blackmail her.

“As soon as the complaint was brought to the notice of the vice chancellor, the internal complaints committee against sexual harassment was asked to investigate the incident.

“Based on the interim report which was submitted by the committee within 48 hours (two days), an FIR was lodged and three accused of Kala Bhavan (fine arts department) have been suspended pending further investigation,” a spokesperson for the vice chancellor told IANS.

The West Bengal Commission for Women Friday took cognizance of the incident on the basis of media reports, and said it will seek the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The female student’s father Friday alleged that a university official offered him money to hush up the matter.

The student has already left Bolpur with her father saying: “I had sent a smiling child but am taking back a distraught daughter. I don’t think she will come back to study here.


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