Sexual harassment of a final year law student in KIIT University in Odisha has led to violent clashes forcing the administration to vacate at least two hostels in the state capital Bhubaneswar. According to local media reports, the violence erupted on 23 November after a second year engineering student allegedly made lewd comments at a final year female law student.
This led to two groups of students clash with each other as they hurled stones and attack using wooden planks inside the university campus. The university administration has vacated two hostels while the classes are running normally.
The CCTV camera visuals showed students vandalising campus property and brutally beating up rival students. In some visuals shared on social media, blood stains could be seen on the floor of a building.
— Campusũtra.com (@Campusutra) November 25, 2018
Saw some videos on KIIT violence.. while students weren't realising what their minor fight could lead to, what was the authority doing? Why wasn't police called immediately.. if called, was it there in time? Parents must be worried. R students safe @KIITUniversity @odisha_police pic.twitter.com/G2bCp9jNwV
— Ranjana Pandey Panigrahi (@PandeyPanigrahi) November 25, 2018
In other visuals, two groups could be seen going after each other even as some are heard shouting to stop the violence saying ‘he will die.’
Police have arrested at least five students. According to a statement by the university, since it was a ‘matter of clash between two groups of students, the university hasn’t been closed Sine Die.’ It said that classes functioning normally adding that only a ‘few students received minor injuries’ in the clashes. The statement read, “They’ve been discharged after first-aid. Rumours of fatality are false. KIIT has a policy of zero tolerance towards such unruly actions and necessary steps have been taken.”
The violence began after a 2nd year B.Tech Mechanical student passed lewd comments on a final year female law student. The law students then staged a protest outside the B.Tech hostel forcing the student to apologise by the end of the day on 23 November itself.
However, the next day, a group of engineering students launched a violent attack after they entered the Law School in the university. The situation could be brought under control only after police arrived. Contrary to the university’s claims, as many as 40 students have been hospitalised.