Karnataka: Female MDS Student with CRPS alleges bullying, harassment by Professors; Discontinues course
The News Minute reports about the case of the female MDS student who took admission at the Oxford Dental College in 2016 in PG degree in Dental Science at the Department of Paedodontics and Preventive Dentistry. After one month of joining, she was reportedly bullied and harassed by the professors in her Department.
Adding to the alleged suffering, she started experiencing severe pain in her leg around this time. Soon after visiting the doctor, the dental student was diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) as a result of an accident she faced in 2014.
CRPS generally affects the arms or legs of an individual and the patient may complain of constant severe pain. It is a rare condition that occurs following an accident, stroke, or injury.
Resultantly, the dental student often took leave depending on the intensity of pain in her legs. She stated that she used to inform the HOD and get her leaves sanctioned by her, however, she was scolded for taking leave even for a day. Further, her guide in the Department claimed that she was suffering from Munchausen Syndrome (a mental condition wherein a person feigns an illness) and was giving excuses, she mentioned.
Over a period of time, the condition of her legs worsened and the dental student underwent a surgery. She resumed college after 20 days. However, this time the alleged harassment was even more. She alleged that she was compelled by the professors to sit outside the classroom. They allegedly claimed that her behaviour was "reckless".
Subsequently, the dental student opted to discontinue the course. She wrote to the college administration, mentioning that she was leaving the college due to personal reasons. Besides, she applied to get her certificates back. However, the college administration denied handing the certificates. Almost six months passed but she was not given her certificates back, reports the daily.
Following this, she decided to file a complaint and point out the bullying by the professors. She also wrote to the Dental Council of India (DCI) and Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (under which Oxford Dental College falls), seeking action against the professors of the department for the bullying and harassment she faced.
Observing this, the DCI has directed RGUHS to ascertain the authenticity of the allegations, take appropriate action and submit the report to the Council.
On the other hand, the HOD of the Department denied the allegations. Rather, she mentioned that the college has been considerate of her health condition, adding, that the college officials counselled her to take six-month leave and rejoin college to complete the course. She also stated that the student was being treated for the psychological aspects of the pain she experienced from her medical condition.
However, talking to TNM, the student stated, “I didn’t want to mention any names or make a big issue out of this, which is why I didn’t say anything about the bullying at the time.”