The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday put on hold an order issued by the National Commission for Scheduled Castes to the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpur, directing it to file a police complaint against four professors who allegedly harassed their Dalit colleague.
A Dalit faculty member, Subrahmanyam Saderla, alleged he was being harassed by four professors, Ishan Sharma, Sanjay Mittal, Rajeev Shekhar and Chandra Shekhar Upadhyay, PTI reported. The four professors approached the court after a three-member panel led by APJ Abdul Kalam Technical University Vice-Chancellor Vinay Pathak, as well as the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, said they found the allegations to be true, according to The Indian Express.
The commission had asked the institute to file a police complaint against the professors for “caste-based harassment and discrimination” under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
The court, however, observed that it was beyond the commission’s scope to direct the institute to file a complaint, and stayed the order, PTI reported. A two-member bench comprising justices Krishna Murari and Ashok Kumar gave the respondent two weeks to file a counter-affidavit, and the petitioners another two weeks to file a response.