Wednesday, February 14, 2007

[NewKerala] Central Commitee for strict criminal laws against ragging

Bhopal, Feb 12: Voicing need for changing mindset of students about ragging, a Central Committee formed to suggest ways to end the practice today advocated framing of "strict criminal laws" against it.

Ragging should be completely banned. Centre and States should frame strict criminal laws to end the practice, Committee Chairman R K Raghavan told reporters after holding discussions with college Vice-Chancellors, Principals and students here.

The seven-member committee, formed after a Supreme Court ruling to suggest ways to end ragging in institutes of higher learning, was collecting inputs on every aspect of ragging by talking to various groups in different states, he said adding it will submit a report before the apex court in April.

Apart from advocating strict laws, the committee -- after visiting Assam, West Bengal, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh ahead of its visit to Rajasthan and Kerala -- believes that there was a need to change the mindset of students about ragging, the former CBI Director said.

To a query, he said ragging can be stopped to a great extent by appointing specially trained Wardens in college hostels, identifying hostels situated outside the teaching institutes where students reside and creating awareness among students.

Around 90 per cent of victims refrain from reporting ragging due to fear of senior students or of being boycotted, Raghavan said adding these students should be sheltered.

On steps against ragging in Madhya Pradesh, he claimed to be impressed by the "zero tolerance policy" adopted by the state and increased involvement of police in preventing it.

--- PTI

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