Tuesday, December 18, 2007

KTWV 08 Issue 46: Alleged sexual harassment

Two media reports reached me about an alleged sexual harassment of a foreign student in St. Stephen's College.

The Daily Telegraph headline to an article by Charu Sudan Kasturi read only as Stephenians buck trend, speak up, but the one by Puneet Nicholas Yadav in DNA (Daily News Analysis) screamed Molestation of US student brings forth dirty side of DU.

NEW DELHI: The allegation of sexual harassment by a visiting US student against a senior faculty member of the Delhi University’s (DU’s) prestigious St Stephen’s College has once again brought to the fore the grimy side of the elite university with a student strength of about 3 lakh.


So long as the top leadership in the college is stunted by its internal wranglings, it will be impossible to handle such matters with a strong principled hand.

Does anyone wish that the college was still only a male only preserve?


Rahul said...

Sorry for the late comment.

I was taken aback by your last question, which seems to reflect the usual "blame the victim" mentality of this country -- and especially disappointing in someone who lives in a progressive European country. But perhaps I misunderstood you?

jmatthan said...

Is a progressive European country better than a country with non-progressive moral values.

This would make for a good Stephanian debate.

All I can say is I went to a non-co-ed school, a non-co-ed college and I do not think I am the worse for having done so.

If I could recite to you some of the serious problems related to this "progressive" western education system and how it has ruined and destroyed lives, how divorce rates are soaring, where marriage is just a convenience, maybe my question has some relevance.

Rahul said...

Jacob - whether co-education is good for the students is a separate question with no clear-cut answers (some studies suggest it's good for boys but not for girls). We were talking about sexual harassment and you seemed to be suggesting that the solution is to segregate the sexes. That is, if girls don't want to get harassed, they shouldn't come to a former men's college like St Stephen's. Instead of suggesting it, why don't you say it outright, or deny it?

Anonymous said...

I think it is about time that we get rid of our Passage to India hang ups. The women of St. Stephen's do not need your brand of "progressive" patronage. Thank you very much sir.

Rahul said...

manasi -- if you are trying to convince me that Jacob could be right in his nostalgia for the men-only days, you're almost succeeding.

Sanjay said...

Interesting dialectic.

Jacob - I'm confused as to what gender-neutral educational opportunity - chief among co-education's benefits - has to do with divorce rates. And can Manasi expand on "Passage to India hangups"? Not being hip to this (post-colonial?) malaise, I'm now worried I may be suffering from more than garden-variety existential angst.

If "separate but equal" were feasible in practice, I would have no problems with single-sex education. Since it doesn't, co-education, with its undeniable but minor disadvantages, will remain the norm.

Besides, returning to the original topic, segregation doesn't prevent sexual harassment. Saudi Arabia and Iran are good counter-examples.

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