Ever since college days, we have had this fear of ragging. Be it the first day of college or when taking panga with seniors, the term ragging would give us goosebumps. Even our Indian Cinema portrays a different shade of ragging in movies like Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. etc. Though it may seem pretty cool onscreen, none of us ever wish to be on the other side in reality.
This time, its all about Calcutta University where in a span of five months, three complaints regarding ragging have been filed and this number has raised questions whether the students are being ragged because the university has turned a blind eye towards the culprits. The month of November and December witnessed complaints lodged by the students with the university.
On 22nd March, at the PG Men Students’ Hall in Taltala where a first-year student of modern history resided, dialed the number of the UGC’s anti-ragging helpline and accused six of his seniors who had been ragging him for months.He has expressed that he was compelled to do obscene gestures and abuse famous personalities. He added that when he refused to do so, he was beaten up. On having received the complaint, the message was forwarded by the commission to the Vice-Chancellor Sonali Chakravarti Banerjee stating that a complaint had been filed by a student. She was requested by the commission to counsel the boy about his safety and make him understand that he not only had the support of the authorities but action would be taken as well.
To investigate the matter, a committee of two members was formed with the Shantanu Pal, the Deputy Registrar and the board of residence secretary. Though they visited the hostel on Tuesday, they are yet to file an FIR with the Taltala police station. It is a UGC rule that on having received a complaint of ragging, the authorities ought to file a complaint within 24 hours. Fearing revenge from his seniors, the guy has returned home to Contai in East Midnapore. The mother of the student who complained in December blamed the university stating “that was waiting to happen”, due to the ignorance showed by the varsity authorities.
Last time, on 7th December at the New Law College Hostel on Bidhan Sarani, the police had to rescue the alleged victim from a room where the accused had confined him. The law student’s mother stated that despite the investigations carried out by the police, the varsity failed to locate any merit in the complaints. She also expressed that the UGC’s intervention also had no effect on the varsity and they were very keen on guarding the accused students. Due to this behavior displayed by the varsity authorities, there is no fear of punishment and hence such acts are happening.
The university, after facing criticism and complaints, has shifted the student to its hostel located in South Kolkata. Well, this is not the first time that ragging has been an issue. Earlier, on November 9, four students of the Sanskrit department who resided in the Bidhan Sarani hostel had raised their voice against ragging as senior law students were the ones who were accused in this case. Despite complaining the VC Chakravarti Banerjee, even, in this case, the varsity couldn’t find any merit in the same.
Harping on the latest complaint that has given rise to flames, the VC communicated that the matter was still being investigated by the deputy registrar and divulged their intention to provide separate accommodation to all the freshmen. Bringing the peg back to the focal point, she denied that the university had been negligent in investigating the complaints filed earlier.
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