IIT Kharagpur suspends teacher Seema Singh for abusing SC, ST students

IIT Kharagpur: In a viral video taken during an online class Singh was heard hurling abuses at students leading to debate on casteism at the IITs.

IIT Kharagpur suspends teacher Seema Singh for abusing SC, ST students IIT Kharagpur (Picture Source: Wikimedia Commons)
Team Careers360 | May 13, 2021 - 10:06 a.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur suspended Seema Singh, the teacher accused of abusing and threatening students on Wednesday.

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A special committee that investigated the matter declared Singh, a teacher in the humanities and social science department of IIT Kharagpur guilty of abusing students of Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and physically disabled communities.

The registrar of IIT Kharagpur, Tamal Nath told News18 that Seema Singh has been suspended after getting the report of the fact-finding committee. She will resume only after further orders are issued.

The matter came to light after a video of Singh went viral last month where she can be heard hurling abuses at students from the historically marginalised sections attending an online preparatory English class.

The National Commission for Scheduled Castes, or NSC also took suo moto cognisance of the issue and decided to investigate

Apology and investigation

On April 27, the NCSC sought a report from IIT Kharagpur, the police and local administration within 15 days failing which they may be summoned to appear before the commission. A day after the video went viral, Singh had apologized for her “unintended words” via email. She had expressed regret for going “overboard” under the stress of social isolation after testing COVID positive.

The incident caused an uproar in the student community who called IITs “notoriously hostile to Dalit”. IIT Kharagpur students had demanded that the director terminates Seema Singh's services.

Furthermore, a group of women alumni of IIT Bombay wrote to the IIT Kharagpur director condemning the actions and words of Singh, and demanded “immediate action”. A student collective, Ambedkar Phule Periyar Study Circle, of IIT Bombay, had also demanded the teacher’s suspension.

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