New Delhi: She used her cellphone to secretly record her conversations with St Stephen's principal Valson Thampu and the professor who was allegedly sexually harassing her.
A 22-year-old research scholar has handed over the tapes to the Delhi Police, claiming that they prove her claim and establish that Reverend Thampu pressured her to drop her sexual harassment complaint. "The principal has been throwing allegations at me. I released the tapes in self-defence," she told NDTV today.
The woman has alleged that she was sexually harassed by Professor Satish Kumar, who was her research guide, for two years, and when she went to the principal last year, he tried to shield the professor and force her to put on paper that her complaint was an academic one.
"Reverend Thampu was worried more about the institute than my safety and dignity...He threatened me and said if I complained, my PhD would suffer," the student said.
NDTV cannot independently verify the contents of the audio clip, in which Reverend Thampu is heard saying: "Trust God, trust me. You have to take that complaint back. Do it today... or there will be complications. It will be out of my hands." He also purportedly tells the student: "Be a happy person, you are a young girl, you need to be happy. You should focus on completing your PhD thesis and withdraw the complaint or there will be complications."
On Facebook this morning, Reverend Thampu said "mischievously edited and cleverly manipulated transcripts" had been released to the media.
A large group of student protesters barged into the college this afternoon to demand the principal's removal and action against him.
Professor Satish Kumar, who quit as Bursar of the college last month, was today granted protection from arrest till August 17, when the Delhi High Court will take up his case next. He has been asked to join investigations whenever the police ask him to.
Reverend Thampu has alleged in a report to the government that the student refused to cooperate with the internal probe committee of the college.