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'Not Safe': Amid Video Leak, Parents Ask Chandigarh Varsity Girls To Return Home

"They are running a business, (they) don’t care about students," a parent hit out at Chandigarh University.

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Gender
4 min read
'Not Safe': Amid Video Leak, Parents Ask Chandigarh Varsity Girls To Return Home
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After massive protests broke out in Chandigarh University over a girl student allegedly recording videos of other female students in the hostel, several parents arrived on campus to take their children back home.

Girl students on the campus staged a protest late on Saturday, 17 September, after videos of approximately 60 girls in the hostel bathroom were allegedly leaked on the internet.

Meanwhile late Sunday, police confirmed that they had nabbed two of the suspects in the case.

The Quint spoke to some parents, who confirmed that they were asking girl students to return home as they were "not safe" on the campus anymore. While multiple students claimed that over 100 girl students have left the hostel since the protests broke out, The Quint has reached out to the administration to verify the same.

A parent, who did not wish to be named, said that he drove down to Mohali from Delhi after he heard about the protests. He added that his daughter called him in a state of panic and narrated the incident.

"They are running a business and don't care much about the students," the parent added.

Another parent, Kishan, who hails from Punjab's Fazilka, had travelled for over five hours to take his daughter back home from the university's Le Corbuiser hostel, where the protests had erupted.

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'One-Day Picnic for Betterment of Mood': Warden to Students

The police have registered a case against the girl student who allegedly leaked the videos under Section 354C (pertaining to voyeurism) of the Indian Penal Code and the Information Technology Act, 2000. Navreet Singh Virk, SP, Rural Mohali, confirmed her arrest, but maintained that the initial investigation showed that "there is only one video of the accused herself."

Meanwhile, in an audio clip shared with The Quint by the students, a warden of the girls' hostel is heard asking the girls to come for a "one-day picnic to nearby places to lift their mood," after the events of the day.

"Whoever wants to go on a one-day trip or picnic right now, I will come to your floor. You can give me your name and mobile number. This will lift your mood from whatever has happened today. Please take permission from your parents."

The university, however, said that the claim of 'objectionable' videos being shot was totally "false" and "baseless."

"All the rumours of objectionable videos shot of other girl students are totally false and baseless. No videos were found of any student which is objectionable, except a personal video shot by a girl which was shared by her with her boyfriend," the university said, in a statement.

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'Administration Irresponsible, Need To Answer Parents'

"The administration is claiming that no video of the other students were shot. It is saying that these are rumours. How did the administration let these rumors spread in the first place? Students were on a sit-in protest through the night; why was there no probe on what actually happened to calm their fears? This is irresponsible. How can I let my daughter continue studying in this place," the father of a second-year girl student told The Quint.

The 50-year-old father said that he drove from Ludhiana to Mohali at 10 am in the morning to get his daughter back.

"I will decide when she goes back, but definitely not until both the Chandigarh University and the Punjab Police have answers," he said.
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'Will Stay & Fight for Justice'

A girl student, who is enrolled in a first-year Bachelor's course, however, said that she "will not leave," though many of her peers were leaving.

"The girls in my hostel were filmed but the university did not take any action. Instead, they are denying the filming of such videos. The warden misbehaved with the girls who raised their voices. I will stay and fight for justice," the student, who hails from Haryana's Gurugram, told The Quint.

Muskan Yadav, who is pursuing BSc in Forensic Science, told The Quint that her parents have been asking her to return home at the earliest – but she does not want to.

"We are really scared. We knew that there will be theft in the hostel, but did not expect videos to leak out. My parents and family have been calling us relentlessly. They are asking me to come back, but I have told them not to come now. Everyone's parents are coming."

Unnati, who is pursuing BBA in the university, said that while her parents wanted to pick her up, she has asked them to wait.

"I don't know what to say. I am still in shock but I have asked my parents to wait," she said.

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Punjab State Women Commission chairperson Manisha Gulati has said that an investigation into the matter is underway. 

"This is a serious matter, an investigation is underway. I am here to assure parents of all students that the accused won't be spared," she said, adding that ambulances were called into the campus last night after a few students, who were part of the protest, suffered anxiety attacks and fainted.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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