Kalakshetra Row: Hari Padman, Dance Teacher Accused of Sexual Abuse, Gets Bail

Padman was arrested on 3 April based on a complaint of sexual harassment filed by a former student.

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Hari Padman, a senior faculty member at Chennai's Kalakshetra Foundation, who was arrested on charges of sexual harassment in April this year, has been granted bail.

On 3 June, the IX Metropolitan Magistrate Court at the Saidapet court complex in Chennai granted bail to Padman on the condition that he must report to a police station daily, The Hindu quoted police sources as saying.

Padman, a dance professor at the institute's Rukmini Devi College of Fine Arts, was arrested by the Chennai Police on 3 April based on a sexual harassment complaint filed by a former student of the institute. He was suspended from Kalakshetra thereafter.

Kalakshetra Students' Protest Since March

The police had registered the First Information Report (FIR) against Padman at the Adyar All-Women Police Station. He was booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 354A (sexual harassment) and 506 (criminal intimidation), and Section 4 (penalty for harassment of woman) of the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act.

On 30 March, students of the Kalakshetra Foundation had launched a protest demanding the dismissal of four faculty members, including Padman, accusing them of sexual harassment and abuse on campus.

The three other faculty members – Sanjith Lal, Sai Krishnan, and Sreenath – were dismissed from service, but no legal action was taken against them.

After Padman's arrest in April, his wife Divya Padman had filed a complaint with the Chennai Police, alleging that he was arrested on a 'false complaint'. She sought action against the survivor and two teachers at the institute.

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