‘College management suspended a student for three days for alerting the media’

Two first-year Bachelor of Business Management (BBM) students of M.S. Ramaiah College of Arts, Science and Commerce were disrobed and beaten up allegedly by their seniors at a paying guest (PG) accommodation in Mathikere near the college here on Sunday.

While the victims – Sudesh Kumar Mondal and Sumit Dubey – described it as ragging, the college management maintained that it was a clash between the students. The two groups got into an altercation as one of the freshers allegedly misbehaved with a female classmate, who then complained about it to the seniors – Varun and Harish – who she was friends with, said fellow students. The two seniors then allegedly decided to take on the first-year students.

The Ramaiah management has suspended Shrikant, a classmate of the victims for three days for alerting the media, said a classmate.

The victims alleged that the seniors took them to the PG accommodation and beat them black and blue after forcing them to disrobe. They were later let off with a warning, following which the victims returned to college and informed their classmates, who in turn admitted them to hospital.

Based on the complaint, the Sadashivanagar police arrested Varun and Harish, registering a case of assault and criminal intimidation against them.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Kamal Pant reiterated that it was not ragging, but a case of assault and criminal intimidation. “We have taken up the case and booked the accused based on the charges made in the complaint,” Mr. Pant said, adding that the complainant has not made any charges of ragging and the reason cited is trivial in nature. He said that the jurisdictional police are investigating and would take appropriate action based on the probe.

Commenting on the alleged harassment meted out to the junior students by their seniors, Mr. Pant assured that the police officers would meet the college management to discuss necessary steps to ensure the safety of the students. “If the students have specific complaints, they can inform the police. We will take action,” he said, adding that the identity of the complainants will be kept confidential.

B. Thimme Gowda, Vice-Chancellor of Bangalore University (BU), to which M.S. Ramaiah College is affiliated to, said he was convinced that this was a case of ragging. “I met the two boys (the victims) in the hospital. One of them is doing alright but the other boy told me he was slapped continuously for over an hour. It was an attack alright, but a violent form of ragging too,” he said.

Prof. Gowda also said that the college management had been instructed to keep the second-year students involved in the attack under suspension until an inquiry is completed.

More In: Bengaluru