HYDERABAD: The student of the college of pharmacy of Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences (LUMHS) who attempted suicide has accused two faculty members of harassment. LUMHS Vice-Chancellor Prof Beekha Ram Devrajani constituted a five-member inquiry committee, headed by Prof Dr Suhail Almani, on Thursday to probe the incident.
The student was shifted from the girls' hostel to the intensive care unit of Liaquat University Hospital on October 9 after she tried to cut her veins in the wrist with a blunt object. "I used to remain worried because of harassment," said Saira Gul, who is enrolled in the seventh semester of her graduate study programme, while speaking to the media after appearing before the inquiry committee on Friday.
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She claimed that she had informed the college's authorities about the harassment prior to resorting to suicide.
"Every time, I was told to come up with some concrete evidence."
Gul's father, Khawand Bux Thaeem, said his daughter had earlier told the family about the harassment but they mistakenly ignored her complaints.
Almani said an investigation has been initiated and the statements of the student and her parents have been recorded in presence of a judicial officer appointed by the Sindh High Court for harassment cases in varsities.
He said that the statements of the accused teachers, other faculty members, fellow students and staff of the hostel will also be recorded.
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Prof Devrajani claimed that the student never submitted allegations against the teachers in writing. He said he has been told that the student confronted some mental stress issues and that she used to take anti-depressants. "The allegation that her teacher deliberately failed her in an exam may not be true because LUMHS has introduced digital checking of answer sheets."
Meanwhile, the students of LUMHS held a demonstration on campus on Friday, demanding action against both the professor and the lecturer, who have been accused of harassment.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 12th, 2019.
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