MeToo: Former Director of Kerala Bala Sahithya Institute accused of sexual harassment by two women
A sexual harassment case has been filed against former Director of Kerala State Institute of Children’s Literature (KSICL) Rubin D’Cruz. According to reports, a Malayali woman working in Delhi claims that the incident occurred on October 2, 2020. She even wrote a Facebook post explaining the alleged traumatic physical assault she had experienced. Rubin is also Assistant Editor of the National Book Trust.
Reportedly, the victim got acquainted with D’Cruz through common friends, while she was in search of rented accommodation in Delhi. He reportedly invited her to his home in the name of helping, where he allegedly sexually harassed her.
The Facebook post read, “I had to see the real face of the left-progressive masked men who are waging a Facebook revolution about human rights and equality. The progressive, who had invited me home for a meal in the name of acquainting, displayed his true colour after a short friendly conversation. The next few days taught me how being physically violated can mentally debilitate even the strongest people.” In the post, she even thanked the ones who stood by her side. “My sincere gratitude to the very few friends who stood by me through thick and thin, my family (including my 72-year-old mother), who told me to go ahead with courage, and my support system, including my counselling team. One thing seemed right: leaving someone like him scot-free was an injustice to my fellow human beings as well,” the post read.
Rubin D’Cruz is well known for his so-called “left-progressive” ideas on his social media posts. According to reports, the sexual harassment complaint was lodged at Delhi’s Vasanth Kunj police station on February 21, 2021, but the matter came to light after the victim’s Facebook post. Immediately after the news regarding the complaint came out, another woman has come forward to share a similar experience through social media.
In another incident, a young Dalit writer shared a traumatic incident concerning another famous “left-progressive personality” as a predator when she was 14 years old. In a proxy Facebook post, she talked about how her traumatic experience with Progressive Kala Sahithya Sangham’s (PuKaSa) vice-president A Gokulendra, who was also an official with the organisation at the time of the incident. She narrated how it was not limited to one incident and that it had occurred during many events. She speaks about how that experience had pushed her out of the literature field, and how she had to surrender her writings to escape from this trauma. The post goes on to explain how a Dalit female writer was removed from a space that she had struggled to get into, due to the actions of one man.
The social media post garnered widespread support and based on the post, Sreeja Neyyatinkara writes an open letter to PuKaSa’ general secretary Asokan Charuvil on the MeToo allegation against A Gokulendra. She said that even after days, PuKaSa’s silence on the matter is objectionable. Sreeja even demanded that strict action should be taken against Gokulendra. Sreeja Neyyattinkara was the former Vice President of the Welfare Party.