Molested, Harassed, and Physically Assaulted, Survivor Speaks Up
On 10th May, Sunday, Upasana Chakraborty, a student of Jadavpur University, spoke up about her ex-boyfriend, Francis Mondal, physically assaulting, molesting and verbally harassing her on the night of 30th April, from a page called “I Just Want Francis to Acknowledge and Apologise”.
The link to the page is: https://www.facebook.com/francisapologise
Here is the first post from the page, detailing the turn of events on 30th April:
The text goes as follows:
Francis Mondal (henceforth referred to as F) and I, Upasana Chakraborty, were in a relationship from 13th March, 2013. He broke it up over a text message on 1st April, 2015. After that he left for Vellore for his treatment. Since then, we’ve been loosely in touch, until we started meeting regularly during the last week of April.
On the night of 30th April, there was a grievous turn of events, to which I’d like to draw your attention.
At 7:00 P.M, near the Subarna Jayanti Bhavan, Jadavpur University, F, after meeting my friend, drew me aside, commented on my choice of clothing, saying that I dress in a particular fashion, and sit in a particular place to attract attention from men. He called me no better than a ‘slut’ for projecting myself in a way which apparently was designed to attract attention, that I signal that ‘men could have their way’ with me.
At 8:30 P.M, F and I walked from the Open Air Theatre to Jadavpur Police Station, the verbal abuse continuing all the time. He continued to slut-shame me, ‘accusing’ me of making out with my friend, calling me worse than his ex-girlfriend (because she would notify him of the men she’d be with, hence ‘not springing surprises’).
After 10 minutes, we boarded a cab from Jadavpur P.S. On the cab, he began to ‘demonstrate’ what he assumed men do to me. At first, he rubbed his hands on my back, then on my front, groping me for a while. After this, I slapped him, and he slapped me back. Then I sat away from him, but the verbal harassment continued.
At 9 P.M, I reached the place I live. He stalled me for an hour in front of the place, demanding to stay with me, knowing full well men are not allowed to enter or stay at the premises. I tried calling up my father for help, after which he snatched my phone away. When my father kept trying my number repeatedly, he referred to my father as ‘a persistent guy’. I tried to get my phone back, but he ran away every time I did. I gave up on getting my phone back and was about to enter my place. He followed me in.
Past 10 P.M, past my curfew hour, we entered the place and took the elevator together. He gave me back my phone. I received my father’s call then, and not wishing to worry him, told him my phone had frozen. To which he said that I didn’t sound ‘panicked enough’.
I went through the door to my room and he stood outside. I gave him back some colours I had borrowed from him, and asked him to leave, to which he said he would create a scene if I forced him to take back his colours. Then he said he was going to leave, that he would kill himself and I would be responsible for it.
Relieved about the fact that he had spoken about leaving, I went downstairs with him to show himself out. I stood at the last flight of stairs and told him to unlock the door and leave, at which point he insisted on me to come down to him. I went along, opened the door for him. He was standing beside me, and he punched me right across the face. I fell down and stood back up. He pulled at and tore my bra strap and molested me again, while continuing to punch my face. He hit me five to six times. I begged him to leave, with folded hands. When I managed to close the door behind him, I heard him kicking the door for a while.
This was the first of a series of posts. The next post goes as follows:
Text goes as:
On the morning of 3rd May, I received multiple phone calls from Francis. He said he wanted to meet me. He at first ‘justified’ the physical assault that occurred on 30th May, which enraged me. He later said he wanted to get back into the relationship we used to share.
Around 6:30 P.M, he dropped by Jadavpur University campus. My friend engaged in a dialogue with him. I did not say anything. After that, he followed me on my way back home, even after my friend repeatedly asked him not to, and only left when my friend who accompanied us screamed at him.
The next post was about her going to meet Francis Mondal and his parents, accompanied by some of her friends. At that meeting, Francis Mondal denied that he had molested her. The next post, and the penultimate one, included one audio clipping of Francis admitting to one of his friends that he had beaten Upasana up, and two instances of him denying the molestation charges. The post goes as follows:
The following is an audio recording of Francis confessing to physically assaulting me (to one of his friends on 3rd May), and denying that he had molested me, and repeating it (at his house on 6th May), respectively.
The transcript is as follows:
F: I hit her. I hit her, of all people.
Me: …in the taxi because of my ‘dressing sense’, he groped me-
F: I did not grope you.
F: I did not grope you in the taxi…
And the audio clip goes as:
I have presented my case, providing my narrative of what happened on 30th April, 3rd May and 6th May. I hereby ask Francis Mondal to acknowledge his crimes, and to apologise for them, on this public forum of Facebook.
There has been no comments from Francis Mondal, the perpetrator. Many have extended solidarity to Upasana and her cause.
Watch this space for more updates.
Eye Art Collective expresses full solidarity towards and support for Upasana, and for her bravery and her unbreakable will.