Aligarh Muslim University professor suspended over ‘mythical references to rape' in slideshow; FIR lodged

Rashmi SharmaUpdated: Wednesday, April 06, 2022, 10:54 PM IST
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Lucknow: The alleged references by a professor to ‘rape’ in Hindu mythology has sparked off a major controversy on the Aligarh Muslim University campus, which is finding reverberations outside the academic world.

Jitendra Kumar, a professor in the department of forensic science, Aligarh Muslim University, made the alleged faux pas while using a slide during the discourse.

A girl student of the department took offence, posted a screen shot of the slide on social media and accused Prof Jitendra Kumar of insulting Hindu gods and goddesses.

The student mentioned in the tweet that she had graduated from AMU two months back and is a taxpayer. She contended that the money of tax payers is being used to run down Hindu icons. She tagged the top officials of AMU as well as the district administration in her tweet.

The matter was brought to the notice of the police and a screenshot of the tweet was forwarded to the AMU administration. A local BJP leader, Dr Nishit Sharma, also lodged an FIR in this case. In the FIR, the head of the department of forensic science, too, has been named along with an unknown person.

The Superintendent of Police (SP), City, Kuldeep Gunawat, said that a case has been registered and an investigation would take place. Taking a serious note of the issue, the AMU administration issued a show-cause notice to the accused Professor and formed a two-member committee to look into the matter.

"You deliberately and maliciously played a slide in the power-point (presentation) in the classroom under the heading Rape, so as to outrage the religious feelings of a particular community," the notice from AMU Registrar Abdul Hamid said, warning him of possible disciplinary action.

After the preliminary report of the committee was submitted on Wednesday, the AMU administration suspended the Professor in question; the suspension will continue while the enquiry is being conducted.

However, Prof. Kumar tendered an unconditional apology and said that his intention was not to hurt the religious sentiments. The slide was shown only to highlight that rape has been part of the society for long.

He said it was "an inadvertent mistake" and assured that "no such incident will occur in the future".

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