Rag­ging cases in coun­try on the de­cline, sta­tis­tics show

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Shreya Bhandary shreya.bhandary@hin­dus­tan­times.com

MUM­BAI: Rag­ging, which is a mat­ter of con­cern in col­leges and uni­ver­si­ties across the coun­try, has pur­port­edly de­clined since 2013 across the coun­try, sta­tis­tics from the na­tional anti-rag­ging helpline show.

Fig­ures made pub­lic by the Univer­sity Grants Com­mis­sion (UGC) as well as the anti-rag­ging cam­paigner Aman Satya Kachroo Trust in­di­cates that the num­ber of com­plaints has de­clined over­all.

In Ma­ha­rash­tra, for in­stance, the num­ber of calls reg­is­tered by UGC’s anti-rag­ging helpline de­clined from 41 in 2014 to 17 in 2015. Ut­tar Pradesh reg­is­tered 53 cases of rag­ging last year, down from 94 in 2013 and 80 in 2014. In West Ben­gal, an­other state which re­ports a large num­ber of cases, num­bers fell from 81 in 2013 to 54 and 53 in the next two years.

Ex­perts are, how­ever, scep­ti­cal about the fig­ures. Ac­cord­ing to them, while there has been a de­cline in the num­ber of com­plaints reg­is­tered, the UGC fig­ures grossly un­der­es­ti­mate the real sit­u­a­tion in col­leges and uni­ver­si­ties where rag­ging is still a con­cern. Col­leges and univer­sity au­thor­i­ties of­ten tend to hide cases rather than solve the prob­lem, ex­perts say.

“Uni­ver­si­ties as well as activists across the coun­try have been do­ing a lot to spread aware­ness amidst stu­dents. While the num­bers have come down, much needs to be done to put an end to the men­ace,” said Ra­jen­dra Kachroo, founder of the Aman Satya Kachroo Trust.

“For starters, in­sti­tutes need to stop con­sid­er­ing rag­ging com­plaints as a blow to their stature in so­ci­ety and in­stead, treat it like vi­o­la­tion of hu­man rights.”

In March 2009, Kachroo’s son Aman, then a 19-yr-old stu­dent of Dr Ra­jen­dra Prasad Med­i­cal Col­lege and Hos­pi­tal in Kan­gra, Hi­machal Pradesh, was found dead af­ter be­ing ragged by four se­niors.

CON­TIN­UED ON P7

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