Victim from Andhra Pradesh; students protest on campus
A 19-year-old student of the National Institute of Technology, Calicut, (NIT-C) died of injuries after a wall near the squash court on the campus collapsed on him. He died on the spot.
The accident occurred in the afternoon when Mannam Venkateshvaralu, a second-year Computer Science student, went for a game of squash on the campus. Mr. Venkateshvaralu was a native of Andhra Pradesh.
The death created a furore on the campus with the institute’s Student Affairs Council leading a protest of angry students to the office of the Director, M.N. Bandyopadhyay, seeking an immediate inquiry into the incident.
Students whom The Hindu spoke to, but who did not want to be identified, said the wall had “suddenly” toppled and caught Mr. Venkateshvaralu under. His friends said he was physically challenged.Students’ claim
The student body members alleged the wall had been “without a proper base”. The council also claimed that the institute had inadequate facilities to deal with such medical emergencies.
“We have a health centre is name only. There is a residential medical officer, but there is not even one ambulance on the campus,” a senior student said.
Council members, when contacted at 8.30 p.m., said they were sitting on a dharna outside the director’s office seeking to know how the wall “suddenly” fell. The Kunnamangalam police said preliminary findings confirmed that Mr. Venkateshvaralu died of injuries and trauma caused by the wall falling on him. They said an inquest had been done, and results would be out only on Sunday.
M.L. Joy, Student Welfare Dean, said he had received no complaints from the students’ about the wall being shaky. He termed the incident “sudden”.
“We are shocked by this tragedy. The institute authorities will convene a meeting with the student representatives,” Mr. Joy said.
Council members later said a meeting has been called on Monday. The institute director could not be contacted.