SFI moves women’s panel over leaders’ sexual harassment

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Kolkata, March 18 (IANS) Alleging sexual harassment of girl student activists in a city correctional home, the SFI on Saturday moved the West Bengal Women’s Commission and human rights panel and took out a protest rally in the heart of the metropolis.

Students Federation of India (SFI) state President Madhuja Sen Roy said she and other activists, who participated in a ‘March to Raj Bhavan’ programme protesting against corruption in the recruitment of teachers in primary schools on March 9, were sent to jail (called correctional home in Bengal) custody for four days by invoking a new stringent law passed against destruction of public property by the Mamata Banerjee government.

“In jail, the girl student comrades had to face sexual harassment. In the name of security, a number of comrades were asked to take off almost all our clothes and physically checked one after the other. They were verbally and physically harassed.

“On March 14, the girl activists were obscenely checked over their clothes before they were produced in court,” she alleged.

Sen Roy, accompanied by SFI state secretariat member Rituparna Mitra, and two All India Democratic Women’s Association leaders Rupa Bagchi and Swapna Bhattacharya called on state women’s commission chairperson Sunanda Mukherjee and submitted a written complaint.

“Mukherjee assured us she would look into the matter,” Sen Roy said.

Another complaint was lodged before the West Bengal State Human Rights Commission.

The SFI and a number of other Leftist student, women and youth organisations on Saturday took out a rally from College Street to Dharamtala crossing, about three kilometres away, demanding that the guilty be punished.

–IANS

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