TERI’s newly appointed executive vice-chairman R K Pachauri has said he has never exercised any pressure on the organisation and its officials as alleged by his former woman colleague who has lodged a sexual harassment case against him.
In his reply filed before the Delhi High court in response to fresh averments made by the complainant in her plea, Pachauri denied the allegations as “incorrect”, “misleading” and “figment of imagination” of the victim and her counsel.
“The answering Respondent (Pachauri) has never exercised any pressure upon TERI and its officials. It is matter of record that answering Respondent was away from TERI from February, 2015 till July, 2015 and it was only after the permission of the Sessions Court that he was allowed to enter the office.
“The entire averments in para under reply mention about alleged non-cooperation by TERI and not by him. Further the trial court which is monitoring the investigation has consistently held that answering Respondent has cooperated and has never violated any conditions of the bail,” he said in his reply to the notice issued to him on January 28.
Pachauri sought dismissal of the petition claiming that it was motivated and not maintainable in the eyes of law.
The victim in her fresh petition had alleged that Pachauri was “exercising influence” on officials of the organisation to settle the sexual harassment case.
Two days ago, Pachauri was appointed the executive vice- chairman of TERI, a specially created post.
Pachauri further alleged that the fresh application was filed only to delay the adjudication of the case against him.
In his reply filed through advocate Ashish Dixit, Pachauri alleged that the complainant was acting like accomplice in conducting a ‘media trial’ as she and her counsel were discussing the application on news channels in order to prejudice his case.
“The complainant as well as the counsel went live on news channels on January 27, 2016 and questions like “Will Court cancel Pachauri’s Bail?” “Crucial hearing on card tomorrow” were being agitated in the debate. All this was being done when even the application was not even before this Hon’ble Court for hearing,” he claimed.
On January 28, the High Court had asked Pachauri to explain his stand on the fresh application moved by the complainant alleging that he had even instructed one of her colleagues to persuade her for an out-of-court settlement.
The 29-year-old female research analyst, who has now quit the organisation, had moved the application a day before the court was to pronounce its verdict on her plea seeking cancellation of the anticipatory bail granted to Pachauri by a lower court on March 21 last year.
Taking note of her fresh application, the court has deferred pronouncement of the order.
The high court had on January 13 reserved its verdict on the woman’s plea seeking cancellation of Pachauri’s anticipatory bail in the case.
Pachauri’s counsel had denied police’s claim and stated there was “nothing on record to suggest that he had influenced witnesses or any other person related to the present case or interfered in the investigation”.
On February 13 last year, an FIR was registered against Pachauri on charges of sexual harassment under IPC sections 354, 354(a), 354(d) (molestation) and 506 (criminal intimidation).