Dr Maria Charles-Vulgarity lands Chennai college HoD in soup

Vulgarity lands Chennai college HoD in soup

Express News Service First Published : 25 Jun 2010 04:26:38 AM ISTLast Updated : 25 Jun 2010 08:21:43 AM IST
CHENNAI: Staff members of the Department of Zoology of an autonomous city college on Thursday alleged that they were being harassed and verbally abused by a male colleague on the premises.
In a written complaint to the City Police Commissioner, Dr Mazher Sultana, Head of the Department of Zoology, Presidency College, said that Dr Maria Charles, HOD of Biology, used “unparliamentary words and filthy language” against her and other members of the department. He indulged in character assassination of women staff and was in the habit of making “indecent gestures and teasing them by nicknames in front of students.” In spite of “repeated representations to higher officials, no action had been taken,” the complainant said.
On June 4, Prof N Madhavan, Public Administration Department HOD of the college, was held after a PhD scholar alleged sexual harrasment by him//

CHENNAI: Infighting among faculty of the zoology department of the Presidency College came out in the open on Thursday with a group of women teachers led by the head of the department Mazher Sultana lodging a sexual harassment complaint against a male colleague.

Sultana, accompanied by some female colleagues, submitted a complaint at the Chennai police commissionerate, alleging that Maria Charles was repeatedly using abusive language and making vulgar gesticulations to women staff members. She said that on June 17 during a departmental meeting, he had abused her using double entendres. “In spite of repeated representations to higher officials no action has been taken for the smooth running of the department. The threatening vulgar gestures and sarcastic comments have made the work place unsafe for everyone especially the women staff,” Sultana alleged in her complaint.

This is the second case of sexual harassment against a faculty member of the oldest college in Tamil Nadu. Earlier this month, the police had arrested the head of the public administration department Madhavan for allegedly misbehaving with a research scholar.

Meanwhile, inquiries revealed that infighting was common in many departments in the Presidency College. “Of the 14 staff members in the zoology department, only two are non-controversial. The rest are always scheming. Charles is known for his intemperate behaviour and some of the women staff also retaliate in the same language,” said a professor.

On an earlier occasion the directorate of collegiate education had initiated an inquiry and ordered the transfer of several zoology teachers based on a complaint. Immediately, the complaint was withdrawn and the matter was put to rest.

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