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Protest at BHU after professor accused of sexual harassment returns

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Varanasi: Banaras Hindu University students staged an overnight protest outside the campus gate after a professor, accused of sexual harassment, was reinstated and allowed to take classes. The students have been protesting since Saturday evening, demanding that the professor be punished.

Professor S.K. Chaubey of the Zoology Department was suspended in 2018 after charges levelled by a few students. In June, the BHU executive council revoked the suspension of Mr. Chaubey. However, it censured and restricted him for taking academic classes. Mr. Chaubey returned to taking classes a few days ago.

After assurance from the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) vice-chancellor that the matter would be reconsidered and referred back to the executive council for a review, the students called off their protest, according to a press release.

“The complaint against Prof SK Chaube, Department of Zoology, by some students of the department were inquired into by the Complaints Committee.The report of the committee was considered by the executive council and a punishment was imposed on him.

“However, on the recommendation of the matter, it has been decided to refer it back again to the executive council for a review of its decision,” the BHU release said.

“Till the time, the executive council reconsiders it, Prof S K Chaube is directed to proceed on long leave,” it said.

Chaube was suspended in October last year on the charges of sexual misconduct levelled by some students of his department.

In June, the BHU executive council, the highest decision-making body of the varsity, revoked the suspension of Chaube, however, it censured and restricted him for taking academic classes.

Chaube returned to taking classes a few days ago, triggering protests, a student said.

In order to ensure prevention of sexual harassment, the university has already circulated guidelines framed under the Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal of Sexual Harassment of Women Employee and Students in Higher Educational Institutions Act, the release said.

It will be re-circulated for displaying it on the notice board of each department, it said.

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Hyderabad based GVK Group reportedly under government scanner

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Mumbai: The GVK Group, which is in locked in a legal battle with the Adani Group on stake sale in its flagship Mumbai International Airport (MIAL), on Tuesday said it has received a notice from the corporate affairs ministry (MCA), seeking some details about the airport operator.

This comes at a time when the Hyderabad-based diversified GVK Power & Infrastructure Limited, which owns 50.5 percent stake in the MIAL, is in the process of hiking its stake in the airport arm by acquiring 23.5 per cent additional stake from Bidvest and ACSA.

The MCA notice, according to sources, is based on a whistleblower complaint to MCA with regard to alleged ‘diversion of funds’ from some of the GVK Group companies.

MCA has initiated an inspection of the books of 11 entities, which include GVK Power & Infrastructure, Mumbai International Airport, GVK Jaipur Expressway Pvt and GVK Power. It has also ordered an inspection of the books of Navi Mumbai International Airport Pvt – the under construction airport at Navi Mumbai.

These companies are located in different jurisdictions — Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Rajasthan and Mumbai — of the Registrar of Companies and MCA has sent a physical inspection letter to each of these companies, sources said.

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