Home News Reports Two more women come up with sexual assault charges against playwright Sudipto Chatterjee, the professor resigns from college

Two more women come up with sexual assault charges against playwright Sudipto Chatterjee, the professor resigns from college

Sudipto Chatterjee asked Rajeswari Paul to remove her Kurti, moved her hand over body, so that she screams to learn diaphragm breathing. Even pointed towards his genitals to show that he had not got an erection as proof that he was not interested in sex

A day after one woman came up against sexual harassment charges against playwright and poet Sudipto Chatterjee, two more women have revealed similar horrific experiences with him. Yesterday in a Facebook post, Angela Mondal had narrated how Chatterjee had sexually assaulted while teaching her about the traumas of rape. She had alleged that he had penetrated her with his fingers so that she learns how to scream when being raped.

Responding to the post of Mondal, another woman has narrated a similar story on Facebook. Rajeswari Paul has said that she had contacted Sudipto Chatterjee for a voice exercise. Before granting her appointment, he had sent her a message warning about what to expect. He had written, ‘there are lots of things, hope you won’t mind. There will be a lot of physical touch in this process. Nothing very sexual, but close contact. Think beforehand if you have inhibition. I always make this clear with my female students so that there is no misunderstanding later on. And of course, privacy will have to be maintained. I am saying this to maintain transparency’. He also wanted to know whether she will be having her menstruation period during the exercise, as she will have to put pressure on her stomach muscles.

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Receiving the message Paul thought that Chatterjee does not have any wrong intention and she went to his home. After teaching her voice exercise for some time, he asked her to take off her Kurti. She felt embarrassed at this, but thought that she will have to be comfortable if she wants to learn. Moreover, he was repeatedly assuring her that he is not interested in having sexual relations with her. So, she went ahead and removed her top in front of him. He taught her some more exercise after that.

After that, he asked her to lie on the bed, which she did. Then he started to move his hand over her body, saying that he won’t be able to teach if he does not hear her screaming. And it is very important to practically learn how to scream, he said. During all this, he was repeating that he was not sexually excited after seeing her, and was not wanting to have sex with her. Paul said that Chatterjee was wearing only trousers at that time, and he even pointed towards his genitals to show that he had not got an erection as proof that he was not interested in sex.

Also Read: ‘The Wire’ makes a #MeToo list, leaves out their own founding editor and National Herald editor

‘At that time I realised what is going completely blank’, Rajeswari Paul wrote describing her state of mind on that day. After some time, she gathered her courage and told him that she can’t do this. He was surprised at this, asking why can’t she do it. He also asked how would she learn acting if she refuses such exercises.

Paul said that not a single word written by Modal is a lie, and asked people to stand behind her.

Another woman named Srabasti Ghosh has also alleged that Sudipto Chatterjee harassed her for a long time, almost two and a half years, although she refused to divulge the details in her Facebook post. She said that what Chatterjee was did was not direct, but covered with many layers in many subtle ways. She added that abuse-consent-assault stay in a overlapping position in some such cases.

“I cannot deny the fact that I have learned from him a lot, but at the same time, I was the one of the victims of his trap. I was 20 years old at that time, when it all started,” Ghosh wrote. Explaining why she was silent for two years, she said that she didn’t know how to talk, know how to come up with this complex situation.

Sudipto Chatterjee has denied the allegations made against him by Angela Mondal on social media. He said that he had found deficiencies in her acting, and she needed to learn ‘diaphragm breathing’ for the sake of theatre. Moreover, the woman herself had approached him to learn, he said. Chatterjee said that teaching diaphragm breathing technique requires partial nudity, some physical touch, all of which were done on the consent of the woman. He stressed that he didn’t have any sexual motive.

Chatterjee said that although he does not know if any of his contemporaries use this technique, he himself learnt this way, and he feels this is a very effective technique. He said that he employs this technique on both male and female students, after taking their consent.

He said that he is shocked that such charges were levelled against him, as he is teaching acting to students this way for a long time and nobody had complained before. It can be noted that he didn’t deny the description of his diaphragm breathing teaching technique, but said that it was done for the sake of teaching acting and he didn’t have any sexual motive.

In the meanwhile, Sudipto Chatterjee resigned from his post in Heritage Academy in Kolkata after Angela lodged a complained against in the college on Monday. According to reports, Chatterjee was called by the college’s human resources department on Tuesday and was told that the college had zero tolerance for sexual abuse. After this he submitted his resignation. The College also constituted an internal complaints committee, which it didn’t have earlier as required by UGC guidelines.

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