GUWAHATI, Nov 16 - Srijeeb Karmakar, a research scholar of the Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati, has appealed to the scientific community of the country, seeking support for his fight against alleged harassment at the institute.
Karmakar appealed to the scientific community after the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) did not take any steps against his open letter about the allegation. The research scholar had written to the PMO, alleging mental harassment by his supervisor.
In the letter, Karmakar alleged that his research guide was abusing him mentally, and exhibited misconduct by giving unethical guest authorship in some writings.
“He is using his position to threaten my liberty and freedom of expression, and is also discriminating me on the ground of my ancestry and economic background,” Karmakar, who hails from Agartala, stated in that letter. Along with the open letter, which was circulated on social media, he had also initiated an online campaign, namely #Phdmetoo.
Karmakar alleged that after the PMO complaint and the #Phdmetoo campaign, one of his teachers said IIT-G would not find his research supervisor as guilty; rather the institute would save him by using connections in the PMO and with a political organisation, and asked him to write an apology letter.
“Now, I am forced to speculate that a network of people in IIT Guwahati played with my naïve and inherently trusting nature. From one year, I have no research work done and I am only wandering from door to door. I need justice,” he wrote in the appeal made to the scientific community of the country.
Meanwhile, reacting to the allegation, a spokesperson of the IIT Guwahati said, “This is very old news and the student presently does not have any complaint with us.”