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Crime Patrol: Ex-DU employee, who set herself on fire alleging sexual harassment, dies in hospital (Episode 317-318 on 29th-30th Nov 2013)



The Inside Story

New Delhi, India

Dismissed College Employee Dies After Setting Herself on Fire

Pavitra Bhardwaj (40), a former laboratory attendant at BR Ambedkar College, passed away on Monday morning after attempting suicide by self-immolation in front of the Delhi Secretariat. Bhardwaj had accused the college principal, GK Arora, of repeated sexual harassment. She had filed complaints against him in 2009 and 2012, but the university's apex committee ruled in favor of Arora. Following her tragic death, protests erupted among teachers and students of the college, demanding the resignation of the principal and a thorough investigation into the case.

The demonstrators criticized the Delhi Police for the alleged lackluster investigation, as no action had been taken against the principal or another college employee mentioned in Bhardwaj's suicide note. The woman's relatives demanded the immediate arrest of the principal and emphasized the need for a fair inquiry into the matter. BJP leader Vijay Jolly and former Delhi Mayor Arti Mehra also questioned the absence of the Delhi chief minister and the education minister in visiting the victim.

The incident highlights the importance of addressing and combating sexual harassment in educational institutions. The National Commission for Women expressed concern over the case and pledged to investigate once it is reported to them. The tragic death of Pavitra Bhardwaj has drawn attention to the need for a comprehensive response to such allegations, ensuring the safety and well-being of all individuals in academic settings.


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