St Stephen's molestation row: Victim says she was denied stipend, access to lab
St Stephen's research scholar who was allegedly molested by a college professor, on Thursday alleged that she was denied payment of her stipend and access to the laboratory, a charge denied by the principal as 'constructed controversy'.
New Delhi: St Stephen's research scholar who was allegedly molested by a college professor, on Thursday alleged that she was denied payment of her stipend and access to the laboratory, a charge denied by the principal as "constructed controversy".
The victim has also alleged that when she forcefully tried to enter the laboratory where she was conducting her research, she was locked by an attendant inside following which she had to call the police.
While police officials confirmed of having received the call and visiting the campus but denied that the laboratory was found locked.
"Today when I went to the college to inquire about the release of my stipend, I was told by the concerned official in the college office that since Satish Kumar (her PhD supervisor) has not given his approval, the stipend could not be released," the victim alleged.
"Further, when I tried to enter the laboratory the attendant refused to let me in after checking with Kumar over phone.
"I somehow forcefully entered but the attendant locked me from outside following which I called the police," she added.
She was accompanied by Devansh Mehta, the philosophy student who had taken the principal Valson Thampu to court after he had suspended him for publishing an e-zine without seeking clearance on its content.
Responding to the allegations, Thampu told PTI, "This is another constructed controversy. I had personally handed over the stipend cheque to her in December, the cheque in question today is for the next six months, which has not been issued as the documents need her PhD guide's signature and he is not available as I had "advised" him not to visit the college".
"The allegations that she was denied access to the laboratory are baseless..such are attempts by vested interests and then they would say college is always embroiled in controversies," Thampu said.
Police officials said that they have not received any written complaint in this regard.
"We have not received any written complaint in this regard, we had got a call from the girl following which we visited the campus but she was not found locked inside and the laboratory was open," a senior police official said.
The victim had approached police last month alleging that she was molested by Satish Kumar, an assistant professor in college's Chemistry Department.
She had also accused Thampu of "shielding" the teacher when the matter was reported to him. She had also made public a set of recordings which she claimed to have made during her meetings with the principal over the issue.
Thampu, who had offered to resign if charges were proved against him, had also claimed that he was being "chased like an animal".
This morning he vented out his anger about the "constructed drama" on his Facebook page, only ot remove it later.
"The very first thing which smells of controversy is why did Devansh Mehta go with the girl in the first place? What he has to do with the issue? There are vested interests who are using the victim for character assassination of the college and are now even Mehta is at their hands," Thampu had said in the post.
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St Stephen's College principal Valson Thampu, who is embroiled in a controversy in a molestation row, claimed the victim is being used against him.
The Supreme Court on Monday declined to entertain a plea of St Stephen's College management against a Delhi High Court order granting interim stay on the proceedings by a fact-finding team of the college against one of its teachers.
St Stephen's research scholar who was allegedly molested by a college professor on Thursday warned him and college principal Valson Thampu of legal action if they do not facilitate disbursal of her stipend, access to her compounds and computational data within seven days.