Representative image: According to Verma's friend,�the lawyers from CCD asked Verma to drop the case against the coffee chain, and only then will they drop the FIR of sexual harassment. Image source: Wikimedia via Harsha KR. Photograph: (Others)
The CCD employee filed a complaint that Verma 'eve-teased' her. Critics say it is an attempt to prevent the incident from going public
Cafe Coffee Day's slogan "A lot can happen over coffee" turns out to be apt.
A young man who was slapped by a female employee of CCD in Jaipur after filming cockroaches in the store's fridge has been charged with assaulting and hurling abuses at the woman, according to an India Today report.
There are conflicting accounts of exactly what happened, despite the existence of some video footage of it.
Arpan Verma, a student at the National Law University in Delhi, published a widely-shared video of the incident at CCD.
This post is not from Verma's account, which has been apparently removed. Here is the recording of the same incident, if not the same exact footage.
Here is Verma's description of events.
According to a report by OpIndia, Verma and another man entered the Jaipur CCD and made an order. When Verma noticed the cockroaches he asked for a refund and received it. At this point, the employee merely covered the cockroaches from view with a menu card and continued serving customers from the same fridge.
Verma told other customers about the cockroaches. He alleges that the employee became angry and asked him to leave the store. One employee became abusive, allegedly, and took out her phone and began recording.
Verma also began recording. This is where the above footage supposedly begins. He records the cockroaches in the refrigerated counter, then is slapped by the employee.
This event itself occurred on March 12, but videos of it first became public just this week, on March 27.
Unsurprisingly, the video generated backlash against CCD. #Boycott CCD was trending Thursday morning on social media site Twitter.
Activist Deepika Bhardwaj claims that rather than discipline their employee, Priyanka Priyadarshini, on March 29 CCD staff took her to the Manak Chowk police station to submit a complaint against Verma for "eve-teasing, harassment and molestation".
This was their way of preventing him from going public with his expose, the report claims. Verma has since been called to the Jaipur police, due to the formal complaint against him.
The CCD employee's side
According to Priyadarshini, Verma outraged her modesty and harassed her, police said. She claims that Verma and another man entered the CCD to order some beverages, and upon being told only coffee was for sale became furius and abusive, calling her a "slut and bitch". She alleges that they then left the CCD then came back, which is when they began recording their footage.
There was a period of time that has been unrecorded, that took place before video was shot, and it's impossible to determine what took place here. The footage that the CCD employee shot has not been made public.
CCD had addressed the public about the incident, back on the March 27, claiming to be looking into what transpired.
We have escalated the recent issue at our Jaipur outlet, and are in talks with the consumer & the internal team to ascertain facts.— Cafe Coffee Day (@CafeCoffeeDay) March 27, 2017
According to Nikhil Anand Singh, who said he was friends with Verma, the lawyers from CCD asked Verma to drop the case against the coffee chain, and only then will they drop the FIR of sexual harassment.
CCD lawyer flipped the negotiations, asking us to drop the case against CCD, then only they will drop the FIR of sexual harassment.@PMOIndia— Nikhil Anand Singh (@nikhilanand88) March 29, 2017
CCD is a massive coffee chain in India, with over 1500 outlets across the 29 states of India, according to its page on Wikipedia.