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Ragging Delhi University
Ragging Delhi University RAGGING HAS been banned by the government. Punishment is supposed to be meted out to erring students who indulge in this so-called pastime on the pretext of accepting newcomers into their fold. However, the evil of ragging continues and the authorities appear to be helpless to take action because the culprits usually hail from certain strata of society which believe that they are a law unto themselves. The problem is normally noticed in engineering and medical colleges and polytechnics. The worst part is that witnesses are hard to come by because those who are directly involved in the crime are more powerful than those who try to enforce discipline. 

When fachchas, as the freshly enrolled students are known as, step into the Delhi University campus on Wednesday, the death of Amann Kachroo at a medical college in Himachal Pradesh last year would be weighing on their minds.

For, Kachroo (19), a first-year MBBS student at the Rajendra Prasad Government Medical College in Himachal Pradesh's Tanda, died after he was allegedly tortured by senior students in the name of ragging.

College special: India's best colleges 2010
Aware of the fear of ragging in the minds of newly enrolled students, DU authorities have assured them that they have nothing to fear as no stone has been left unturned to curb the menace this year.

On Wednesday, fachchas will walk into a more secure campus as the university has made provision for police patrolling on North and South campuses in addition to the pickets positioned outside colleges every year.

"There will be patrolling on both North and South campuses and we are expecting the police to deploy about 200 of their personnel on North Campus alone. That apart, colleges have been asked to keep sealed complaint boxes on their premises and assign someone the responsibility to look into the complaints regularly," DU proctor Gurmeet Singh said.

"Policemen in plainclothes will also travel in buses plying on the North Campus to ensure that none of the freshers, especially female students, are harassed on their first day," Singh added.

Apart from policemen, freshers will, in all probability, also encounter several posters publicising helpline numbers and contact details of senior police officers.

If none of the above helps, then the new rule of extracting an undertaking from all students - in line with UGC norms - would surely act as a strong deterrent, the authorities feel.

Since last year, DU colleges have adopted the rule of having freshers submit a written undertaking saying that they are aware of ragging guidelines and will report any such incident.

Colleges have already procured the affidavit from freshers at the time of admission.

Senior students will sign theirs once they re-join college.

Apart from following university instructions, the colleges on their part are hoping to tackle ragging through counselling sessions and publicising contact numbers of the anti- ragging committee and squad members.

Miranda House and Ramjas College have gone a step further and prepared an anti- ragging booklet that will be handed to first- year students on Wednesday.

"The booklet will apprise students of the rules against ragging and what they should do if they think they're being ragged. Awareness is the only way we can fight this menace," Pratibha Jolly, principal of Miranda House, said.

"The strict vigil and a host of measures taken have obviously instilled confidence among the freshers. 

"Honestly, I am not at all afraid. I think enough is being done by the authorities and that is quite reassuring," Sweta Agarwal, a first-year Economics (Honours) student, said.

Ragging in Indian colleges is still a brutal reality despite all the claims and rules made by the Indian Government. Every year when kids pass out from schools, they look forward to their college life. A time when they are stepping into adulthood, learning to be responisble citizens, and enjoying the freedom to take their own decisions. 

After the hectic and tensed process of admissions, students everywhere dream for a perfect way to start college life. A place where they step out of the boundaries of school, and get over their inhibitions in order to expand their social circle. 

Seniors think it's Fun..!
On the other end, senior students plan to get friendly with freshers aka "fuchas" and come up with new ideas to rag them. Socialising with seniors is the biggest fear in the mind of freshers, mainly because of the numerous horrific tales of ragging they have heard in the past. 

Many seniors feel that ragging is just an informal way to break the ice between them and the new batch. But they overlook the negative impacts caused by it. Ragging in India's college hostels  takes the form of sexual abuse causing physical and mental torture to the juniors. On the other hand, senior students have glorified ragging as a neccesary tool to teach juniors how to respect their seniors, and prepare for the hard grind that lies ahead of them.

Different forms of ragging- End result is same!
Ragging is done in many forms, starting with orders to dance or sing, playing truth or dare, to the extent of performing tasks like proposing to a girl or performing explicit sexual acts. In hostels, ragging takes on a harsh and humiliating form causing physical and mental pain. For instance, in the popular Bollywood movie 3 Idiots, we could get a glimpse of the level of  ragging done by hostellers. The type and level of ragging is almost the same for boys and girls staying in hostels. At times, students do not even complain about their suffering due to the fear of running into more trouble.

College authorities always claim that they have strictly banned ragging in campuses, and if any case happens, freshers can always complain to the Dean or to the faculty. Government has also passed strict laws against practising any form of ragging. But all that is in vain, ragging is very much in existence in India. 

Ragging does not teach freshers to be bold or smart, and is not helpful to build a strong character. In the past, suicide cases due to ragging have been reported from many Indian cities.The mental trauma of sexual abuse in the name of ragging drives the students to remain socially aloof. We still have a long way to go before the menace of ragging in India stops completely.


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