Home >Politics >Policy >Third woman speaks out against sexual harassment by R.K Pachauri
A file photo of former TERI boss R.K. Pachauri. Photo: AFP
A file photo of former TERI boss R.K. Pachauri. Photo: AFP

Third woman speaks out against sexual harassment by R.K Pachauri

A foreign national who worked as Pachauri's principal secretary said that she had noted a difference in the way Pachauri was around her from the very beginning

New Delhi: Troubles for former TERI boss R.K. Pachauri, currently battling charges sexual harassment in a Delhi court, seem to be far from over, with a third complainant coming to the fore.

The complainant, a foreign national, had worked with TERI in 2008 as Pachauri’s principal secretary.

The claim comes close after the TERI’s executive vice chairman’s interview to The Guardian on 26 March, where he has claimed innocence.

Explaining her tenure at TERI, the complainant said she had noted a difference in the way Pachauri was around her from the very beginning.

“He would put his hands on my waist repeatedly, he would hug me longer than I felt comfortable, kissed me on my cheek and enquired about my private life." the complainant has said in a letter. Mint has seen a copy of the letter.

The letter was made public by senior advocate Vrinda Grover, who is also fighting the case of another female researcher who had complained against Pachauri.

The foreign national, who was 18 years old when she worked with TERI, also points out a specific instance where he asked her to join him in his summer house over the weekend and was told to behave professionally by the complainant. She subsequently changed her department.

She finally terminated her one-year contract and left New Delhi within four months of working at TERI.

“It is great to see that women are being courageous and finally speaking out against inappropriate behaviour by R.K. Pachauri. Although the main sexual harassment case is pending before the court, such instances help to reinforce the claims made against him," said Devangana Kalita, who is an activist working closely with Pinjra Tod, a campaign seeking to end discriminatory practises against women in hostels.

“I found out from many sources that this was nothing new and that Pachauri has been involved in many similar situations," said the letter.

Despite several complaints that have surfaced against Pachauri, complainants feel TERI has been trying to bury claims and protect him.

One of the researchers, on whose complaint the FIR against Pachauri was lodged, had said that her colleagues had been asked by senior officials at TERI to convince her to settle the matter outside of court.

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