Rav Datta (Photo)

Fourth-year student Rav Datta, the vice-presidential candidate for Team Ocean, speaks during Wednesday's USC Media Debate, Jan. 25, 2018.

A Facebook post published Thursday alleged that a University Students' Council candidate punched another student, leading to the candidate's resignation from a soph team.

The post, published by Sean Huggins, claimed he was punched in the head on the night of the Soph Formal in September by vice-presidential candidate Rav Datta.

Datta is running in the 2018 University Students' Council elections as part of Team Ocean and confirmed the allegations to the Gazette.

Huggins, a third-year computer science and physics student, said he was concussed following the incident. 

Huggins did not press charges.

"I had never planned on discussing this publicly," Huggins wrote in the post. "...But it makes my blood boil to see that Rav is wishing to make waves as a leader in the Western community by running as a candidate for the 2018 USC P/VP election."

In his statement, Datta apologized to Huggins.

"Let me begin by saying sorry to both Sean as well as any others that this situation may have affected. While most of what Sean said is true, some details are left out. For the sake of others who were involved, whom I care about, I won’t go into it any further, and I accept full responsibility," Datta said.

The USC executive declined to comment; they said they could not answer any questions about individuals involved in conduct issues as it is confidential.

"I don’t really think he’s fit to represent students at Western. Feel free to disagree," wrote Huggins.

Datta emphasized he was sorry.

"As I’ve said to many, including to Sean himself, no amount of words can express how sorry I am for what took place," Datta said. "I do not feel that this incident reflects accurately on who I am and on my judgment. I genuinely hope that the Western community can understand that I made a mistake, one that I regret daily. I invite anybody who is comfortable to have a discussion regarding what has taken place to reach out to me."

Before the incident, Datta was a programming assistant for his soph team. He is also the current vice-chair of the Western student senators.

The allegations come 11 days before the beginning of the elections' voting period, on Feb. 5th and 6th.


Martin is the Senior News Editor at the Gazette. You can contact him at martin.allen@westerngazette.ca, or @mtrallen on Twitter.

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