The former head of a powerful UN climate change panel is facing further investigation after another woman came forward to accuse him of sexual harassment.
Rajendra Pachauri, a Nobel laureate who once helmed the UN’s Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), is already facing charges of sexual harassment, stalking and criminal intimidation brought by a young colleague at The Energy Research and Resources Institute (TERI), a Delhi-based think tank Pachauri founded.
In a further blow to Pachauri, another woman – believed to be a non-Indian national – came forward on Thursday claiming that she too was a victim of Pachauri’s sexual advances when she was aged just 19 and working as his secretary at TERI.
She says she decided to come forward after Pachauri, 75, told the UK’s Observer newspaper last weekend that his emails and mobile phone had been “hacked” by his previous accuser to implicate him and that there was a “conspiracy” designed by climate change sceptics against him.
The latest victim told a local newspaper in India: “I am zero per cent surprised. I can very much relate to what the other women wrote in her statement. When I was 19, I worked at TERI for four months as Pachauri’s secretary.”
She adds: “From the beginning, I noted a big difference in the way Pachauri behaved around me, compared to how other Indian men behaved with me. Other men kept a polite distance with limited physical contact. However, Pachauri would put his hands on my waist, hug me longer than felt comfortable, kiss me on the cheek and enquire about my private life.”
She claims that when she spurned Pachauri’s advances he cancelled her one-year contract in four months.
Pachauri is set to appear in court later this month over the original complaint.
Police have charged Pachauri with four counts including sexual assault, harassment and criminal intimidation, according to the complainant’s lawyer.
Pachauri denies all the charges.