The External Member of the Central University of Kerala’s Internal Complaints Committee (ICC), responsible for investigating sexual harassment allegations against Assistant Professor Efthikar Ahamed B, has resigned following his public statements that cast aspersions on her integrity.
This lone external member, a female lawyer, had served on the 10-member complaints committee for the past 18 months. Efthikar Ahamed, accused of inappropriate behavior towards a first-semester MA English student, claimed in an interview with Onmanorama that the lawyer downplayed the student’s complaint during an ICC hearing.
In an 18-minute conversation on November 24, Efthikar Ahamed alleged, “There is a female lawyer in the ICC. She told me, ‘Sir, you are lucky. The places where the student said you touched do not have any sexual organs.'” The lawyer, however, denies making this statement and submitted her resignation on November 26, citing media misattribution.
When asked about the discrepancy, the lawyer commented that only Efthikar Ahamed could clarify if he fabricated the claim to remove her from the committee. Efthikar Ahamed, when contacted on December 1, denied making the controversial statement, sharing a recording of the conversation as evidence.
Amidst this, Efthikar Ahamed asserted his innocence through social media posts and alumni WhatsApp groups, portraying himself as a victim of a conspiracy by some female students. Simultaneously, four students’ parents submitted a complaint to Kasaragod Collector Inbasekar Kalimuthu, who forwarded it to the university’s Registrar for investigation.
The alleged incident, where Efthikar Ahamed touched a fainting female student inappropriately, occurred on November 13. The university’s female medical officer supported the student’s account. On November 28, a day after the lawyer’s resignation, Vice Chancellor in-charge Prof K C Baiju suspended Efthikar Ahamed from service based on the ICC’s interim report, pending further inquiry.