Hyderabad’s Symbiosis Law School on Sunday denied it had asked two of its female students to vacate the campus on Friday because they had reported sexual harassment. The action against the two students was for “repeated disciplinary violations”, the institute said, refuting media reports that suggested that the action was because of their complaint.
The News Minute had reported on Friday that the two women had been evicted from the hostel.
Clarifying on the matter, the institute said the faculty member the two students had accused of sexual harassment had been suspended on October 16 and that the Internal Complaints Committee had taken cognisance of the complaint. The institute accused the two women of “trying to misrepresent the facts” to “divert the attention from the core issue of disciplinary misconduct by them”.
The two students were involved in disciplinary violations “over the last one to two years, which includes abuse of social media, damaging the reputation of the institute, disrupting the classroom, campus and hostel life, amongst others”, the registrar of Symbiosis International said in the statement. They also instigated other students, were “involved in misbehaviour” with the campus administrator, staff and security guards, “indulged in indiscipline during institute and national events” and “made false reports about fellow students”, the statement claimed.
The institute also claimed the two students and their parents did not attend disciplinary committee meetings convened on several occasions. It said the university received a “mass petition” from other students that said the two had an “adverse impact on them, which was affecting their academics”.
The institute held an inquiry to address the other students’ concern and to “maintain a peaceful environment during examination”. The two women were asked to vacate the campus “in the interim” after the inquiry, but they disobeyed the directions and created a “law and order situation” on the campus, the statement claimed. They also circulated false stories to media and police, said the registrar.
The News Minute report said that the two students had accused Asstant Professor Srinivas Methuku of “constant ogling and causing discomfort”. The students alleged that they had been “orally rusticated” from the college since.