Campus protests

After claims of molestation, Banaras Hindu University appoints its first woman chief proctor

Onkar Nath Singh had resigned from the post on Wednesday after violence on campus.

Under fire for its handling of an incident of alleged molestation of a student, Banaras Hindu University on Thursday appointed its first-ever woman chief proctor, The Times of India reported. Professor Royana Singh of the Institute of Medical Science’s anatomy department was appointed to the post by Vice Chancellor GC Tripathi.

Singh is also the chairperson of the women’s grievance cell on campus, The Hindu reported.

The university had on Wednesday appointed Mahendra Singh interim chief proctor till a regular appointment was made. This came after Onkar Nath Singh took “moral responsibility” for the violence on campus from September 21 to 23 and resigned from the post.

The stir

Students at Banaras Hindu University began their protest on the morning of September 22, alleging that three men had molested a female student inside the campus the night before. They had accused the administration of insensitivity.

On Saturday night, the police allegedly baton-charged the students while they were protesting at the university gate and in front of the vice chancellor’s residence. Several of them were injured in the incident, which led to more violence on the campus.

Vice Chancellor Girish Chandra Tripathi had dismissed the alleged sexual harassment as “a simple case of eve-teasing”. He also claimed that the “incident was deliberately staged” a day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Varanasi. Tripathi had also denied that the police had baton-charged protesting students.

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