The Delhi Police on Tuesday arrested professor Atul Johri of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) for allegedly sexually harassing several women students. Joint Commissioner of Police (New Delhi Range) Ajay Chaudhary confirmed his arrest. He was later produced in a court.
However, he was later granted bail by Delhi’s Patiala House Court.
The students of the university had been demanding the arrest of the professor for a couple of days now. Students of School of Life Sciences, with which Johri is associated, had locked down the school demanding his arrest.
At least nine women had lodged complaints against Johri from the School of Life Sciences, accusing him of sexual misconduct. The women had approached the Vasant Kunj (north) police station claiming that the professor would make explicit remarks on their clothes and touch them inappropriately while delivering lessons.
“Four days after eight women students came forward with sexual harassment complaints against the professor, no action has been taken against him and just one FIR has been lodged,” Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) vice president Simone Zoya Khan had said earlier.
The police later registered multiple FIRs against Johri. “We have recorded the statements of the complainants. A few more female students have approached the police and levelled similar allegations against Johri. The investigation is being closely monitored by Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police Monika Bhardwaj,” Chaudhary had said earlier.
Launching a massive protest, the students had raised slogans against the university officials and Delhi Police. A scuffle had broken out when some of them had tried to break the barricades put up by the police.
On the other hand, women rights organisations including All India Democratic Women’s Association and All India Mahila Sanskritik Sanghatan had also held a protest on Tuesday outside the police station.
Johri said that he was being targeted by Left-leaning students. “The girls who have levelled the allegations against me had received a mail from me on February 27 regarding their irregular attendance in the lab. So, they are targeting me,” he claimed.