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Sexual harassment case: Justice Ganguly quits law university

January 04, 2014 10:10 IST

Beleaguered West Bengal Human Rights Commission chairman Justice (retd) Ashok Kumar Ganguly on Friday resigned from the post of honorary professor of the National University of Juridical Sciences, a student of which had made allegations of sexual harassment against him.

"Some members of the faculty were expressing their reservation about my continuation. So I have sent my resignation today (on Friday)," Ganguly told PTI in Kolkata.

On the resignation from the post of chairman of the WBHRC, He said earlier that he would prefer to remain "quiet". "I have read about it (cabinet clearance of presidential reference) in newspapers. What can I say about it? The development of events is not in my hand. I haven't decided anything and would prefer to stay quiet," Justice Ganguly told PTI.

The process for removal of Justice Ganguly as the chairman of the human rights panel moved a step forward on Thursday with the Union cabinet approved a proposal for sending a Presidential reference to the Supreme Court for a probe into the allegation of sexual misconduct against a law intern who was the student of the NUJS.

The proposal will be sent to President Pranab Mukherjee who will then send the matter to the Chief Justice of India seeking a probe into the issue based on the three points raised in the reference.

A three-judge Supreme Court committee formed by the Chief Justice of India had earlier indicted Justice Ganguly of committing an "act of unwelcome behaviour" and "conduct of sexual nature" towards the woman law intern.

Justice Ganguly attended the office of the West Bengal Human Rights Commission on Friday as usual, though for a brief period.

Asked on the presidential reference, Justice Ganguly said that the development of events is not in his hand.

Welcoming the decision of Justice Ganguly to resign as an honorary professor of the NUJS, a law college spokesperson said they appreciated the decision.

NUJS spokesperson, Ruchira Goswami said, "Our Vice Chancellor P Ishwara Bhatt has appreciated the stand and this has been informed to our faculty as they had demanded that the university should dissociate with him."

The premier law institute's faculty members had written to the VC saying Justice Ganguly's continued association with the institution undermines the ideals of the NUJS that has always strived to teach and foster justice, including gender justice.

As an honorary professor of the NUJS, the retired Supreme Court judge attended guest lectures besides supporting other academic activities.

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