Government College University VC in Lahore orders probe into sexual harassment case

Updated 27 Jul 2020

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Member of a Facebook group posted the allegations on behalf of the student and her friends. — Photo by Hussain Afzal/File
Member of a Facebook group posted the allegations on behalf of the student and her friends. — Photo by Hussain Afzal/File

LAHORE: Following a sexual harassment complaint made on behalf of a student against a teacher of Physics Department of the Government College University, Lahore, the vice chancellor ordered an inquiry into the matter on Sunday.

A member of the Old Ravian Facebook group had posted screenshots and pictures of a teacher of the GCU Physics Department, and alleged quoting a student that she and her friends were repeatedly failed by the teacher in examinations and were also sexually harassed by him.

According to the Facebook post, the group member said he decided to speak on behalf of the student who alleged the teacher wanted to remain in contact with her and her friends.

In the post the teacher was accused of compelling the students to attend his video calls. It said that on Saturday, the teacher called one of the students who “decided to expose him” and took some screenshots in which he was “shirtless and apparently drunk”.

It says when the student turned off her Wi-Fi after taking the screenshots, the teacher started making calls on her mobile number and had sent messages asking her to attend the call.

The post includes call logs, messages and screenshots of video calls, demanding the Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Asghar Zaidi to take notice of the incident.

Meanwhile, the vice chancellor Prof Zaidi also received complaints about a faculty member of the university making inappropriate calls and messages to a female student and ordered an inquiry into the matter. For the purpose, he constituted a committee that also included a woman member.

He said that as a matter of principle harassment would not be tolerated at the GCU.

Prof Zaidi said a web portal (Vice Chancellor web portal) had been created by varsity since February 2020 for filing such complaints by students and staff.

He said the university would not further comment on this matter till conclusion of the inquiry.

He directed the probe committee to maintain the confidentiality of the matter and provide full protection to the complainant.

Published in Dawn, July 27th, 2020