Shamed, molestor confesses: “I kissed her without her consent, groped her”
On the night of 4th May 2015, around 11:00, Joyee Banerjee, a student of the department of English at Jadavpur University was molested and physically accosted by Kabya Ghosh. As per Joyee’s testimony, which he agreed with later, he forced himself on her and started kissing her without her consent, groping her as well, and causing her physical injury. After being asked to stop, he continued to do so again. He then stalked her to 8B bus stand, trying to apologize for his actions.
The following is Joyee Banerjee’s version of events, taken from her Facebook profile:
“Sexual harassment, getting molested, getting beaten up, being followed has literally turned into a daily routine.
I have a case going on in Alipore Court against a particular guy (an ex-student of JU) on the charges of molestation. A very close friend of mine from our University got severely beaten up and sexually harassed by her boyfriend because he “thought she was making out with another person”.
Today, Kabya Ghosh befriended me over Facebook and while talking to me, said that he wanted to meet me. I refused his offer to meet him at Gariahat and instead we decided to meet on campus. Initially we were sitting in Greenzone with a few other mutual friends, and later, as the others decided to leave, we shifted to a place near Gandhi Bhavan (popularly known as the Factory). It is then, when he, all of a sudden starts forcing himself on me. Out of nowhere, he pulled me and started kissing while his hands groped my breast. I somehow managed to push him away and collected my belongings so I could leave. He apologised because he didn’t know if I liked it and followed me out of the stairs. Then again he pulled me and tried to forcefully kiss me while brushing his penis against my body. I had to use all my strength to force him away and almost ran out till I reached science-arts more where there were more people. Kabya then apologises and asks if I feel awkward. He tells me that he is sorry if he has offended me in anyway, while following me till 8B bus stand, from where I took a rickshaw to get back home. Attached to this post are the screenshots of the conversation I had with him after coming back to PG (for people who doubt whether what I say is the ‘complete truth’ or not)
I’m not in a state of mind to frame a proper account. Pardon my grammatical errors.”
Kabya Ghosh also proceeded to harass Joyee after the incident, with constant phone messages trying to apologize for his actions. The following is a copy of some of Joyee’s phone conversations as well:
The next day, May 5th, Kabya Ghosh attempted to cover up the incident. He denied all molestation charges, insisting that he only “patted her back”.
Furthermore Joyee received a call from one of Kabya’s band mates from the group he plays for, Not Yet Decided (N.Y.D.), requesting her to not make the incident public as it would cause Kabya stress, since they have a performance coming up and were concerned about Kabya’s ability to perform at said gig.
Kabya Ghosh himself made his appearance on Jadavpur’s University campus on the evening of the 5th of May, where he was confronted by Joyee and the general student body of the university who sought an open dialogue from him.He was encouraged to give his version of events, and the chance to confess and understand the consequences and nature of his actions. For the most part, the discussion was civil, though several members of the student community did want to take a more physical course of action against the accused. Thankfully no physical violence was perpetrated in any way on Kabya or any other members. Kabya confessed publicly.
Joyee initially sought to file an FIR. But through mutual agreement between the victim and molester, an alternative was decided upon: Joyee and the student body reached a consensus, where Kabya was to post, publicly and for all to see on his Facebook Profile, that he had committed a molestation against Joyee, as well as his attempts to deny the allegations- failing to do so, would lead to him being handed over the cops and an FIR filed immediately or in the event he removes the update at any date or time. After some time, he consented to make the Facebook post, and then was safely escorted off Jadavpur University campus.
The following is Kabya’s confession:
Third Voice: What they are trying to explain to you is what you saw as being… let’s say natural, which in your line was consensual, was actually not consensual, because it made her feel violated and uncomfortable, and I will not further words in her mouth, because she is right here to add on if she wants to. The point now is, is that what you’re calling a “misunderstanding” is actually defined as “molestation”, and that is wrong. I’m sure if you had that definition correct, and if you rethought your actions, and actually asked for consent, then this situation would not be here. So what actually needs to be done is we need to ask her what action she wants, what she wants from you. From what I’m hearing, including Joyee, is that you need to acknowledge that what you did- you call it whatever the hell you want, it is still molestation, you did it, and that’s it. Now, yes or no?
Kabya: If you put it that way, yes.
The following is Joyee laying down Kabya’s course of action:
Joyee: You take a selfie, ok? You will post that on Facebook, saying you’re at Jadavpur University. Those present here who are on Facebook, you will tag. Then you will say these all (the molestation) happened yesterday, I have molested this person, and I’m sorry.
The following is the post made by Kabya Ghosh on his Facebook wall, for public viewing:
“This is me, Kabya Ghosh attesting to the fact that Monday, 4th May, I forced myself on Joyee Banerjee, a girl I had known only since yesterday afternoon.
I kissed her without her consent, molested/groped her and I am guilty of other activities I only slightly remember.
I am also a terrible liar and I kept denying the entire incident until I was compelled to show up at Jadavpur university today, where I finally confessed all the allegations against me to be true in all ways possible.
The post was shared widely in the next 12 hours. Joyee commented on it, saying, “That was a molester speaking the truth probably for the first time in history.”
Kabya Ghosh has had a history of stalking women, with 11 women coming forward who have been harassed and stalked over time by him. As of May 6, his profile has been deactivated/deleted from Facebook, along with the confession post.
Watch this space for more updates.
Eye Art Collective would like to extend solidarity to Joyee, for her courage and indomitable spirit.