Judicial

JU teacher dismissed from p/t role at NSU on sexual harassment charges

A Jahangirnagar University teacher who was also teaching part-time at North South University has been dismissed from the latter, on charges of sexually harassing a female student.

In fact the dismissed teacher, Assistant Professor Atiqur Rahman (Department of Statistics, Jahangirnagar University) ended up getting a beating from the students enraged by his conduct, for which he was forced to apologise.

Pictures and videos of the beating and the teacher’s apology spread through social media on Monday (April 11th). There, some students are also seen abusing Atiqur.

Describing the incident, students of NSU said that the victim had gone to Atiqur’s NSU office to understand a statistical problem, Atiqur suggested she should visit him at Jahangirnagar University to learn. When the student avoided the subject, Atiqur started harassing her in various ways, e.g. calling her late at night. Even if the student tried to avoid the topic of taking tuition from him, Atiqur would keep pressuring her in various ways.

He even tried to tempt her with an offer to buy her an iPhone.

Later, the student shared the developments with her university friends, and on their advice, asked Atiqur to visit a coffee shop in Bashundhara residential area with her today. When Atiqur got there, he sensed the presence of other students and tried to run away, but he was chased down and caught.

At that point he offered to settle the matter for Tk 1 lakh. But it didn’t work and instead he received a mob-beating,before students took him to the proctor’s office. He was fired from NSU there and then.

Back at JU, Atiqur Rahman adamantly denied all the allegations of wrongdoing against him. He said the student had wanted to understand a subject-related problem outside the class. He never harassed her in any form. Today, he had gone to the coffee shop at her request and got beaten up.

The teacher also denied calling the student in the middle of the night, or tempting her with iPhone.

Asked to explain the offer of Taka 1 lakh to the students if he did nothing wrong, he said it was more to save himself from their beating at that point.

Asked why the students would do this to him without any reason, Atiqur said, “The student was upset with me for some reason, or may have done so to get revenge.”

Revenge for what? He couldn’t say. Yet he feels ‘cheated’ and is going to pursue the legal route, most likely on grounds of defamation.

Neither the victim nor her friends or either university has yet commented on the matter.

Source: United News of Bangladesh