A dermatology clinic in KL is under the spotlight as numerous sexual harassment allegations emerged over the weekend.
The claims first gained traction when a journalist shared her experience during a consultation with a doctor on Twitter last Friday (16th August).
Tashny Sukumaran, Malaysia correspondent for South China Morning Post, tweeted that she went to a local dermatology clinic for a consultation on dry skin on her shins.
During the consultation, she claims that the doctor touched her legs inappropriately. She explains that the doctor grabbed her leg and pulled it onto his lap before stroking it.
4/ This total creep STARTED MOVING HIS HAND UP MY LEG towards my knee and thigh. I moved my leg away (couldn’t ‘escape’ because of the angle) and told him that the dry skin was limited to just my shins. He stopped for a moment and then DID IT AGAIN – tried to fondle my knee.— Tashny Sukumaran (@tashny) August 16, 2019
He then moved his hand up her legs onto her knees and thighs. An uncomfortable Tashny moved her leg away, exclaiming that there was nothing up her legs and the problem was limited to her shins.
She told us that she was wearing a long dress that stopped mid-calf and her dress was being shifted up to her thigh.
Uncomfortable with the touching, she repeatedly told the doctor “there’s nothing there, it’s only on my shins”, “there’s no dry skin there” and “the skin there is fine”.
“I was very shocked and taken aback, and scared because he was so quick if that makes sense.”Tashny Sukumaran
She then managed to pull her leg away and left after a brief conversation.
6/ Predatory Doctor then tried to initiate a conversation about my job, my employer, and what was new in politics. My guess is that he was trying to prolong our dialogue to either gauge how pissed off I was, or somehow pacify me. This is speculation.— Tashny Sukumaran (@tashny) August 16, 2019
Not one to take this lying down, Tashny lodged a complaint to the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) and also a police report after checking with a lawyer and senior specialist.
While some may dismiss her claims as an overreaction, Tashny points out that the consultation was for a second opinion. The first doctor who saw her dry skin didn’t even touch her.
She also points out that there was no nurse present in the room to chaperone.
Her shocking allegations spurred a flurry of responses from Twitterjaya, with some sharing their own disturbing experiences with the doctor.
On the flip side, there were also people who chided Tashny for publicly naming the doctor.
However, Tashny stands firm with her decision to name and shame her predator. She told us that she was concerned about the safety of others, especially with the lack of a Sexual Harassment Act in Malaysia.
“Fields like healthcare, law enforcement, journalism hinge on public trust. The people must be able to trust these institutions and actors of these institutions to serve them with integrity and uphold their dignity. If this trust is violated, then it must be made public.
“And true enough, after I named the predator many women approached me to say #MeToo.”
Tashny also tweeted that she has passed the MMC complaint forms to those who have reached out to her about their own experiences with the doctor.
She told us that a few of them who’ve had particularly harrowing experiences are leaning on each other for moral support.
She also updated that her case is still currently under investigation by the police, while she will be submitting the MMC complaint form today- which she received after e-mailing them last Friday and again yesterday.
You can read her full Twitter thread on the allegations HERE.