As some of you might be aware, our friend and colleague, Dr. Saraswati Kerketta (Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography, Rabindra Bharati University), has recently been a victim of caste-based attack in the university. We write this statement to unequivocally condemn the attack.
We, the concerned faculty members/research scholars across institutions in India and abroad, are deeply disturbed by this incident of caste-based attack on Dr. Kerketta. Dr. Kerketta is a young faculty member from a Scheduled Tribe background, and the sole faculty member appointed in a substantive position in her department, thereby taking on the tremendous task of running the department on her young shoulders. This brazen instance of caste-based harassment meted out to her by a group of students who claim to be affiliated to a political party has hurt and disturbed us immensely as citizens of India. The nature of attack meted out to her – for instance she has been followed by the students up till home after the incident – also showcases the gendered nature of her vulnerability. The incident has been followed by mass resignation on the part of other faculty members from various positions in the university, thereby showing indirect proof of the same.
Continue reading Statement of Academics on Rabindra Bharati University Incident of Harassment
Guest Post by Kavita Krishnan
I have been wanting to post about an experience with Delhi police since yesterday, but haven’t found the time yet… Here goes.
Some days ago, (early this month if I recall rightly), I got a call from a woman worker living in Usmanpur near Seelampur. She got my number through the son of one of our Trade Union comrades, who is a friend of her brother’s. She said she was being stalked by a man who made calls to her thretening an acid attack. She has 3 children and was concerned for their safety too. She told me she was scared to complain to the police, and asked for advice. I was reluctant to advice a police complaint without her being fully ready, knowing that it might not yield satisfactory results. So I suggested we meet and talk things over before deciding.
But soon after, she called again: feeling buoyed by a sense of hope arising from the ongoing movement, she had gone to the police station – alone – and written out a complaint, giving the stalker’s mobile number, the number of his bike, and offering to share recordings she had made on her phone of the threat calls. She said, though, that the police had not given her any proof of having received or recorded her complaint (in spite of her asking).
Continue reading Stalking, Delhi Police and Memory – Another Encounter: Kavita Krishnan