HYDERABAD: Gachibowli police arrested Ravi Ranjan, 61, a professor with the University of Hyderabad (UoH) on Saturday on charges of attempt to rape, kidnapping and sexually assaulting an international student. The 21-year-old student, whose nationality not being revealed to protect her identity, came to Hyderabad a month back to pursue a postgraduate course.
Police said Ravi Ranjan, a UoH staffer since 1993, invited the victim to his home at Masjid Bandi on the protest of giving her books pertaining to the course on Friday. Police said he resided alone while his family stayed elsewhere.
After the ordeal, the victim told her friends that at around 4.30 pm, he asked her to go with him to his house and took her along in his car.
Quoting her, Sabari Rajan, a student leader, alleged: “He made her consume alcohol and tried to grope her. He dropped the girl back to the campus at night, and she was found crying outside the hostel for international students at about 9.30 pm. After this, the victim called her lecturers in her home country to narrate what had happened.”
It was stated that her faculty from back home contacted the university administration. A university official then called Ranjan to inquire about the incident but he denied it.
Sabari Rajan said that upon finding her distraught and hearing the words “harassment” and “assault,” the students called the student union leaders for help at about 11.30 pm. They took the victim to the health centre inside the campus, and the management and the police were informed about the incident, Sabari Rajan said
A Gachibowli police official said Ravi Ranjan was initially booked under Sections 354 (outraging modesty) and 354A (sexual harassment) of the IPC following a complaint from the student. “However, after a translator was arranged to take a detailed statement, IPC Sections 328 (intoxicating), 366 (kidnapping), 376 read with 511 (attempt to rape) were added,” he said.
Timeline of events:
4.30 pm: Accused Ravi Ranjan takes student home in car; he stays alone.
About 9 pm: Ranjan drops victim at the campus.
9.30 pm: Victim found crying outside Tagore International House.
10 pm: Friends take her to health centre on campus.
11.30 pm: Student union urge her to lodge a complaint.
11.45 pm: Her lecturer from back home speaks to the UoH management.
Around midnight: Director of student exchange calls Ranjan, he denies allegation.
2 am: Students, union leaders gather on campusm call police, demand action from UoH administration.
3 am: Director of Student Exchange writes to police that they would lodge a complaint but nothing is done.
Around 9 am: Victim lodges complaint with Gachibowli police who take Ranjan into custody for outraging modesty, sexual harassment.
10 am: Students and union leaders hold protest at the campus’ gate, demand suspension of Ranjan.
Around 2 pm: UoH adminstraton suspends Ranjan.
6 pm: Gachibowli police arranges translator for victim to take her statement.
8 pm: Case altered to attempt to rape, kidnapping and sexual assault.