Sanjay Austa, journalist and photographer in an email conversation with Savio Rodrigues, Founder & Editor-in-Chief reveals about his personal sexual harassment episode and throws light on the other cases of sexual abuses linked to Harold Carver, Founder and Director, St Stephen’s School, Chandigarh. Read on…
IndianExpose: In your blog you state Harold Carver, principal of St Stephen’s School Chandigarh sexually abused you and other children, could you narrate your incident for our readers?
Sanjay Austa: I was not sexually abused, I was sexually harassed by Harold Carver, Founder and Director St. Stephen’s School, Chandigarh.
There were however other boys who were actually sexually abused over a period of time.
He called me to his office and tried to convince me that sex with him would change my life.
That kissing and petting by him was not a sin. And he asked a lot personal questions of a sexual nature.
IE: Did you try to approach the school authorities to complain about the behaviour of Harold Carver at that time? What were their reactions? Did they act on your complaint?
SA: The school authorities knew. They were alarmed because Carver was out on bail for sexual abuse. They knew my revelations would spell his doom and also perhaps of the school.
So they quietly removed Carver from the school for the short duration I was in the school and told me to keep quiet about it.
They promised me Carver would not be part of the School anymore. The school authorities have knowingly protected a serial abuser and they continue to do it now even after the fresh allegations.
IE: You’ve interacted with two other victims of Harold Carver’s sexual abuse, could you share with our readers what they had to share?
SA: One of them Navin Chettri said that the sexual abuse by Carver has scarred him for life and destroyed him.
He was left traumatised and could not even finish school. Carver would sexually abuse him and when he refused, Carver would punch him he said.
He said Carver would show them pornographic movies and sexually abuse them.
Manraj the other student said how Carver ordered him to fetch him pornographic books to his house and asked him if he had performed fellatio.
IE: Could you describe the trauma you lived with after the incidence of sexual abuse? How did it affect you as a person?
SA: I had no trauma as I was not sexually abused. One must make a distinction between sexual abuse and sexual harassment. Both are very different.
I was in my 10th standard then so I could take care of myself since I was not abused.
However other children in the school he abused were much younger some as old as 10-11 years old who did not know what was happening to them.
IE: Why have you decided to come out now to share the experience with the public? Is it because people will be more understanding to sexual abuse cases now?
SA: Yes precisely for that reason.
Also the fact that this man goes about with a halo and gives lessons on morality to anyone naive enough to lend an ear.
He is a ‘mentor’ too many ex-students some of them in their 40’s and he gives them counsel on things ranging from love, marriage , life, career etc.
IE: What is it that you seek from the Management of St Stephen’s School in terms of correcting the wrong considering they do not think Harold Caver is guilty of the crimes accused?
SA: Carver virtually owns the school so the management will do what ever he bids them to do.
They are powerless as they are spineless.
Only one teacher stood up for abused children in that school. He was Errol Rodrigues. For that he was thrown out. All teachers know this and keep quiet.
IE: Do share with us your experience with Errol Rodrigues, a teacher who supported the children who were abused by Harold Carver and what did he have to say?
SA: I joined the school late so did not interact with Errol sir while he was there.
He was the teacher the abused children had approached complaining them about Harold Carver.
They told him how Caver would pile them into a room and demand them to have sex.
He would show them pornographic films and mastrubate in front of them.
One boy barely 10-11 years old was especially traumatised and Errol sir told me how he would approach him and tried to reveal his abuse by Carver but could never speak out of fear.
Errol sir tried to get these boys justice. But these boys did not even have a lawyer.
Their case was fought by a public prosecutor.
Carver meanwhile had a team of fat-cat lawyers and they subjected these boys to a vicious grilling in court asking them all sorts of prurient questions.
The parents of the boys could not take it and they threw in the towel and
Carver got away and was back in school soon. Back to abusing and harassing children.