- Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU)
It is not new that leaderships have been charged with serious cases of sexual violence in all organisations and political parties, but All India Students’ Association (AISA), a national based radical students’ organisation who takes in glory to fight for women empowerment with their raging slogan ‘fight patriarchy from womb to the world’ had seen many cases where women faced serious discomfort in fighting against sexual violence within organisations.
A first year PhD student of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) was allegedly raped by an activist of the AISA named Anmol Ratan on Saturday. As reported in a leading news portal, the 28-year-old girl in her complaint mentioned that in June she had put a statement on Facebook that she wanted to watch a film called Sairat and asked if anyone had a copy. She added that Anmol, who also is a JNU student, messaged her that he had a copy of the film.
Anmol Ratan is studying M.Phil in University of Delhi and is supposed to be a leading member of AISA. The victim also added that on Saturday Anmol picked her from her hostel to give her the film and took her to his hostel Brahmaputra where he offered some drinks to her and after that raped her. The girl alleged that Anmol didn’t allow her to leave and threatened her of dire consequences if the issue is revealed. On the basis of the statement of complainant, a case has been registered and further investigation is in progress accordingly.Years back activists from JNU was charged with complaints regarding molestation which was filed in GSASH.
In 2014, one of the senior leaders of West Bengal AISA, Debmalya Halder, who was also a part of the National Committee, was charged with molestation of an activist of AISA only which took a storm in redefining very fundamental ideas of fight against patriarchy within the organisation as well. Although no case has been filed as that remained the choice of the victim but it has been found that she had to face a lot of struggles in getting justice within the organisation itself. The seeds of patriarchy was not easy to uproot from within the organisation, and saw its epitome when the molester, Debmalya Halder’s presence enraged the mass in a program of AIPF which had surprisingly Mr. Dipankar Bhattacharya, General Secretary, CPIML as one of the chief speaker. It has been heard that many activists left the organisation due to the serious conflict and failure regarding the implementation of the punishment of the accused. It has been said by few people that even after his indefinite expulsion from all political activities relating AISA and CPIML, he was observed in a lot of AISA’s meetings and programs.
Our reporters tried to contact the accused but he didn’t pick up while statement issued by the aforesaid organisation read, “AISA takes serious note of the fact that Anmol Ratan, a leading activist of AISA, is facing a criminal complaint of sexual assault. He is henceforth expelled from the primary membership of AISA. AISA will reflect on and deal with this issue with all the firmness it deserves. AISA will be unflinching for the principles of gender justice even if it involves a leading member of the organisation. We stand by the complainant and will extend all possible support in her fight for justice.” The statement was signed by Ashutosh Kumar, AISA Delhi State Secretary.
We hope that the ideas which are preached would be practiced. The fight against sexual violence is a hard fight which questions institutions, authority and hierarchy and indeed it is necessary to fight patriarchy from womb to the world.