“Ragging continues non-stop”

Staff Reporter

88 cases and 12 alleged deaths during past one year, reveals study

Andhra Pradesh topped the list of the worst-hit States

Kerala contained the menace in the last academic year

NEW DELHI: Despite various measures being undertaken to eliminate ragging in higher educational institutions, a new study has revealed that 88 ragging cases and 12 alleged ragging deaths were reported in the country during the past one year.

An analysis done by Coalition to Uproot Ragging from Education (CURE), an anti-ragging non-profit organisation, puts the number of ragging cases reported in the media from July 2008 to June this year at 88, the number of ragging deaths at 12 and the number of attempted suicides at five.

“Last year, 89 cases were reported, out of which 11 resulted in death and there were five attempted suicides. This clearly indicates that despite the claims made by the Union Human Resource Development Ministry, the University Grants Commission and various regulatory bodies, the situation hasn’t improved a bit,” it said.

According to the report, Andhra Pradesh topped the list of the worst-hit States in terms of ragging during the last academic year with 12 reported incidents.

West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh followed close behind with 10 incidents each, while Punjab reported eight.

“In the last academic session, Andhra Pradesh reported 12 incidents of ragging, including four cases of death, and a case of attempted suicide. Even though Punjab has a low number of educational institutions, it has consistently reported a high number of ragging incidents,” said Harsh Agarwal, who is associated with CURE.

“Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal, which are among the earliest states to enact an anti-ragging law, still report the maximum number of ragging incidents in India. It, therefore, shows that anti-ragging laws are not the solution to this problem,” he maintained.

Social problem

CURE reasons that ragging is not just a law and order problem but also a social and psychological menace that can be eradicated only through proper awareness and education.

Interestingly, according to another CURE survey, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh have the dubious distinction of being the worst States in terms of ragging between July 2004 and June this year.

“Another striking feature of this analysis is that Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan, which did not report any ragging cases in the past, have reported a very high number of incidents this year, six and seven respectively. Medical student Aman Kachroo died due to ragging in Himachal Pradesh,” said CURE.

The good news is that Kerala, which had reported a number of incidents during the past five years, has managed to contain the nuisance of ragging in the last academic year.

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