TN sex-for-cash scandal: 5 developments in the case since Nirmala Devi's arrest

There are two probes in the case – one by the CB-CID, and the other by a one-man commission instituted by the Governor.
TN sex-for-cash scandal: 5 developments in the case since Nirmala Devi's arrest
TN sex-for-cash scandal: 5 developments in the case since Nirmala Devi's arrest
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Retired IAS officer Santhanam has been probing the sex-for-cash scandal at Madurai Kamaraj University, after a shocking audio tape was released where a woman professor tried to lure four of her female students to perform sexual favours for ‘high officials’. While he was appointed by TN Governor Banwarilal Purohit, another probe is also underway, by the CB-CID, who have been tasked by the Tamil Nadu government to get to the bottom of the issue.

The professor – Nirmala Devi – from the Devanga Arts College in Aruppukottai, was arrested and suspended from the college last week.

So what else has happened in these investigations so far? Here’s what we know:

1. The CB-CID questioned and searched the offices of the Madurai Kamaraj University (MKU) Vice Chancellor PP Chellathurai, and Registrar V Chinniah, with regard to the sex scandal.

2. As for the one-man panel, the Additional Controller of Examinations at the Directorate of Distance Education in MKU, M Rajarajan, submitted reports to R Santhanam at the MKU guest house in Madurai on Saturday. Santhanam also reportedly questioned the VC and the Registrar for over three hours on Thursday.

3. The panel led by Santhanam started inquiries at Aruppukottai on Friday and completed the first round on Saturday. A day-long inquiry with the four students in the college was reportedly conducted on Friday. On Saturday, 12 MKU staff and two people from Aruppukottai met the commission and gave their representations. According to reports, the MKU staff (both teaching and non-teaching) presented very less information on the audiotape, and highlighted that the image of the university is getting tarnished.

4. On Wednesday, Santhanam is likely to head to Devanga college and question the people named in the tape. He has also said that he will be interrogating Nirmala Devi, the professor who is currently in the custody of the CB-CID.

5. CB-CID says that they have found material evidence which includes call records that incriminate a few university officials. On Friday evening, the CB-CID team visited Registrar Chinniah's office and confiscated documents mentioning expenses and accommodation given to Nirmala and other professors when they visited the university. The team is also attempting to get CCTV footages of the University, according to a TNIE report.

Meanwhile, the state government will constitute a committee to prevent such instances of sexual harassment in TN institutions of higher education in the future. The committee will comprise of members from Tamil Nadu Open University and University of Madras. It will go through the various UGC practices adopted in institutions of higher education and submit a report by April 23, according to a report in The Hindu.


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