//Three Orissa professors suspended for sexual harassment

Three Orissa professors suspended for sexual harassment

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006, IANS,

Bhubaneswar – Three professors of a leading university in the state were suspended on charges of sexually harassing some of their female students, a university official said Tuesday.

Pravas Mishra, Banamali Mohanty and A.S. Das of the psychology department of the Utkal University in the state capital were suspended after female students lodged complaints of sexual harassment against them, the official told IANS.

The university, established in the year 1943, is considered as one of India’s oldest universities.

While Mohanty heads the psychology department, Mishra and Das work as professors in the same department.

The alleged misbehaviour had came to light when a group of female students, pursuing a self-financed diploma course in the university, complained that they were sexually harassed by Das during a field visit to Kendrapara district last month.

Five of the 13 students who had gone for the trip had lodged a written complaint with the university authorities, who suspended Das last week and forwarded the complaints to the local police.

He was then arrested and produced in the local court.

Following his arrest, two more students complained that Mishra and Mohanty too had misbehaved with them and had even invited them to their homes separately.

According to the official, the university suspended both Das and Mohanty Monday night and forwarded the complaints to the local police for action, the official said.

The police have also promised action in this regard. ‘We have received the complaints and started investigation. The professors are absconding but they will be arrested soon,’ Brundaban Ghadai, head of the local Sahid Nagar police station, told IANS