How sexual harassment is turning Indias higher education into hell

An increasing number of cases is coming to light where research scholars are being subjected to victimisation, violence and sexual abuse by professors, essentially by male professors. While India is still evolving from its patriarchal mindset, this signals a rapidly deteriorating social system bereft of values. Creating safe havens for PhD students to eliminate exploitation by professors and to ensure students are not forced to become victims of sexual abuse to earn their degrees remains integral to the education system.

 

The system of higher education in India begs for reforms. The sexual harassment at workplace act 2013 is yet to be adopted by many premier institutions in an appropriate manner. In the Gazette of India dated April 23, 2013, the act came into force to provide protection against sexual harassment of women at workplace and for the prevention and redressal of complaints of sexual harassment. The Gazette reads as, sexual harassment results in violation of the fundamental rights of a woman to equality under articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution of India and her right to life to live with dignity under article 21 of the Constitution and right to practice any profession or to carry on any occupation, trade or business which includes a right to a safe environment free from sexual harassment.

 

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