Facing harassment charges by a woman colleague since September 2013, The Energy Research Institute (TERI) director general R. K. Pachauri is likely to be summoned by the south district police soon after the complainant deposes before a magistrate, sources say.
The 29-year-old woman, working as a research associate in Pachauri’s office, has mentioned his “obsession towards me” and “perverted mind” in the FIR, filed at the Lodi Colony PS on Wednesday afternoon. The police have booked Pachauri for molestation, stalking, sexual harassment (Sections 354, 354A and 354D of the IPC).
Mail Today contacted Pachauri’s lawyer Pavan Duggal, who said: “We have no comments to offer as the matter is sub judice.”
The Delhi High Court on Thursday allowed the NGO chief to approach a lower court to seek anticipatory bail and stayed his arrest till February 23. It also modified its order on Wednesday and allowed the media to report on the case.
According to the FIR, the woman joined Pachauri’s office on September 1, 2013, and was in awe of him. He initially pretended to be friendly towards her, but the situation soon changed into “repeated requests for a romantic and physical relationship” with him. “All his actions and words towards me had underlying sexual overtones over phone, messages and emails.” He allegedly refused to give up despite her telling him several times that she wasn’t interested in any such relationship.
“On many occasions, Dr Pachauri forcibly grabbed my body, hugged me, held my hands, kissed me and touched my body in an inappropriate manner,” the complainant told the police.
She said she had told him clearly to stop such acts as she found it “extremely vulgar and repulsive”, but he didn’t heed her protests.
Mail Today reproduces a series of exchanges between Pachauri and the complainant:
Pachauri’s SMS on September 7, 2013, at 9.22 pm: “My life, your good wishes have brought me safely home. Will ever your love bring me safely into my real home – your warm heart!
On September 8, 2013, at 2.32 pm: “I shall try to suppress my human feelings, and live with a sad restraint on my words and actions. Never to make you uncomfortable or stressed on my account .”
On September 17, 2013, at 10.28 pm: “I never want to make you uncomfortable even if it requires curbing my own instincts.”
Woman’s SMS the same evening, two minutes later: “Hi Dr Pachauri, yes I do get a little embarrassed and also feel overwhelmed.”
Woman’s SMS on October 1, 2013, at 9.38 pm: “As a 21st century woman (I) deserve the right to say that you kindly shouldn’t try and or just hold me close or kiss me. I just got to the Metro.”
At 10.01 pm: “I ain’t and don’t wish to be just a pretty face in your office. That hurts and is a bit demoralising. I’m much inexperienced and nowhere near where you are. I will never do anything out of line with my conscience or take advantages.”
Pachauri’s SMS on October 1, 2013, at 10.06 pm: “That is an unkind cut. And you need not feel responsible about sending me a message when you reach home. I am sorry for my actions. I shall be very very restrained now. I am not a cheap philanderer as you are trying to convey.”
Pachauri’s SMS six minutes later: “And just to prove to you how much I love you, I shall go on a fast after the cricket match tomorrow. I will break the fast only when you tell me that you believe I love you with sincerity and unfathomable depth.”
At 10.21 pm: “All right we have our respective perceptions which differ, and we can live with them and also let live. Perhaps some day you would know how sweet and sublime my feelings for you are! I shall not call off my fast till you fully believe that sacred truth.”
The woman’s reply the very next minute: “I do believe you and you know it but I felt a little violated. Please you are not to grab me and or kiss me.”
Pachauri’s SMS on October 1, 2013, at 10.28 pm: “All right! I’ve got the message. I wish you would see the difference between something tender and loving and something crass and vulgar. You obviously don’t! So I shall slink away and withdraw! Farewell my sweet (her name). But I insist on the fast just to hear you say that you believe I really love you.”
At 10.35 pm: “Besides I want to punish myself for alienating you!”
At 10.36 pm: “And losing the most wonderful girl I’ve ever met.”
Pachauri’s SMS on October 2, 2013, at 4.57 pm: “I hope you are cool and far from nervewrecked! If it is any comfort at all I want to assure you that I love you in the most sublime, wholesome and genuine way. Never would I do anything to you or for you that you don’t consider supremely beautiful!”
Her reply three minutes later: “I am a little less nerve-wrecked now and I hope you eat something soon. Have a good trip to Poland Dr. Pachauri and I’ll see you next week. Best regards.”
Excerpts from Pachauri’s email to the woman on October 10, 2013: “Dearest (her name), Have been up since 2 am. One thought has been bothering me, which may of course give you relief and comfort. I find it very difficult now to hug you. What haunts me are your words from the last time that I ‘grabbed’ your ‘body’. That would apply to someone who would want to molest you. I have loved you in soul, mind and heart. Yes, I would love you physically, only because I love you in all the other aspects. I, therefore, would find it difficult to touch you except to kiss your hand. But perhaps that is just what you wanted. Still very much in love but from a distance.”
Email of Oct 15, 2013; 5.53 pm: “Here I am sitting and chairing an IPCC meeting and surreptitiously sending you messages. I hope that tells you of my feelings for you!”
Email on Nov 14, 2013: “Dearest meri jaan, you came to me at the loss of your earlier job as a measure of desperation. In the context of your injury, what faith have you shown in me? You have been going to the gym against my explicit advise. Even you must know that even if I don’t marry you, I am yours for life.” The woman’s email on Nov 24; 3.22 pm: “If you have the hots for someone you do. It doesn’t mean you love them. Love is different. Sex is beautiful and enjoyed only when you are with the right person, I can’t love everyone. You have had two one-night stands. I have only gone to bed with whom I have dated, not just had sex with someone I have had one dinner with.”