RK Pachauri Case: Victim Alleges Further Harassment 

Why the victim in the R K Pachauri sexual harassment case continue to suffer. 

2 min read
RK Pachauri, the Director General of The Energy and Resource Institute (Photo Reuters)

Earlier this month, the analyst who has alleged sexual harassment by TERI (The Energy Research Institute) chief R K Pachauri, quit the organisation. She said that while TERI treated her in the worst possible manner, it protected Pachauri and even provided him with full immunity — even though the company’s own Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) held him to be guilty.

Further, she told The Quint that details from the internal proceedings are being leaked to the media in order to besmirch her reputation.

I don’t know which documents from the ICC proceedings are being selectively shared with the media. If it is being done, it is against the law. The details of the proceedings cannot be put out in public domain.
Harassment Victim

TERI office-members have refused comment. The Quint reached Ajay Mathur, who is the next Director General of the organisation, but he declined to say anything. Other members of TERI’s Governing Council couldn’t be contacted.

Neither could Pachauri himself be reached. His legal team, however, questioned the victim’s reputation.

The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2013, prohibits the publication or sharing of any information related to Internal Committee proceeding. It says:

The contents of the complaint made under Section 9, the identity and addresses of the aggrieved woman, respondent and witnesses, any information relating to conciliation and inquiry proceedings, recommendations of the Internal Committee or the Local Committee, as the case may be, and the action taken by the employer or the District Officer under the provisions of this Act shall not be published, communicated or made known to the public, press and media in any manner.
The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act 2013
RK Pachauri, the TERI chief accused of sexually harassing a woman researcher. (Photo Reuters)
RK Pachauri, the TERI chief accused of sexually harassing a woman researcher. (Photo Reuters)

The Act also says that anybody who violates or contravenes this Act is liable to a penalty.

Anybody who leaks or shares information which is part of the sexual harassment proceedings is committing an offence and is liable to penalty.
Shomona Khanna, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court

The victim told The Quint that she will take stern action against the violators.

The matter is subjudice. My legal team will lodge a complaint against those who indulge in such practices, causing me more harassment, raising questions about my reputation and integrity.
The Victim

Sources in TERI told The Quint that the organisation will not take action against Pachauri as long as there is a stay on the Internal Complaint Committee’s report which holds him guilty of sexual harassment. Senior lawyer Kamini Jaiswal has criticised this inaction.

Sharing information would lead to further victimisation. Ultimately, it’s always the victim who suffers and the accused continues anyway. This is happening all the time. The Vishaka Judgement clearly mentions that the alleged accused should be transferred immediately and not the girl.
Kamini Jaiswal, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court

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