A Delhi court today ordered framing of molestation charges in the sexual harassment case against RK Pachauri, former Director General of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) filed by his ex-colleague. The next hearing in the case is on October 20.
An ex-colleague in 2015 accused the environmentalist of sexual harassment, with more women raising allegations in the months that followed.
After the court’s verdict today, the woman said she was “relieved” and “exhausting fighting against the former TERI director”.
— Firstpost (@firstpost) September 14, 2018
“This has not been easy. This is a big big leap towards the truth. I am relieved and exhausted fighting RK Pachauri,” she was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
The charges have been framed against the environmentalist by Delhi’s Saket court.
A First Information Report or FIR was filed against RK Pachauri by his ex-colleague on February 13, 2015. He was granted anticipatory bail in the case on March 21.
— News Nation (@NewsNationTV) September 14, 2018
Allegations of conflict of interest and financial anomalies
Christopher Booker and Richard North wrote an article for the Daily Telegraph in January 2010 alleging potential conflicts of interest related to Pachauri’s membership of the board of ONGC and to research grants for TERI, a non-profit institution of which Pachauri was director general. They further alleged that financial anomalies existed at TERI Europe. Pachauri denied all allegations.
In response to the allegations, the audit firm KPMG carried out a review at TERI’s request. The review stated: “No evidence was found that indicated personal financial benefits accruing to Dr Pachauri from his various advisory roles that would have led to a conflict of interest”. The report explains its objectives and methodology and states that “Work done by us was as considered necessary at that point in time” and that it is based on the information provided by TERI, Pachauri and Pachauri’s tax counsel.
In a caveat the review explains that its scope was “significantly different from an audit and cannot be relied on to provide the same level of assurance as an audit”. KPMG examined payments made by private sector companies and found that payments amounting to $326,399 were made to TERI itself, not to Pachauri. He had received only his annual salary from TERI, amounting to £45,000 a year, plus a maximum of about £2,174 from outside earnings. He received no payment for chairing the IPCC.
— National Herald (@NH_India) September 14, 2018
On 21 August 2010, the Daily Telegraph issued an apology, saying that it had “not intended to suggest that Dr Pachauri was corrupt or abusing his position as head of the IPCC and we accept KPMG found Dr Pachauri had not made “millions of dollars” in recent years.” It stated: “We apologise to Dr Pachauri for any embarrassment caused.” The Guardian reported that the Telegraph paid legal costs of over £100,000. Pachauri welcomed the Telegraph’s apology, saying that he was “glad that they have finally acknowledged the truth”, and attributed the false allegations to “another attempt by the climate sceptics to discredit the IPCC. They now want to go after me and hope that it would serve their purpose.