11 Mar 2009, 0143 hrs IST, TNN
DHARAMSALA: The four third year students of Dr Rajendra Prasad Medical College at Tanda in Kangra district, arrested for allegedly beating to
death their junior duringragging, have now been slapped wth murder charges. All four accused have been arrested under section 302 of IPC. Earlier, they were accused of culpable homicide (section 304) not amounting to murder. They have been also booked under the anti-ragging ordinance.
Amann Kachroo, 19, died on Sunday, hours after being ragged by his seniors the previous night. According to the forensic report, he died of brain haemorrhage induced by injury inflicted during excessive beating. His distraught family has sought the strictest penalty against the offenders.
All the accused are now in police custody. While Ajay Verma and Naveen Verma, who were arrested first, have been sent to custody till March 13, the other two — Mohit Sharma and Abhinav Verma — surrendered before the Dharamsala district and sessions court on Wednesday. They have been sent to police custody till March 16, Kangra SP Atul Fulzule told TOI.
Meanwhile, facing flak, chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said all steps would be taken to ensure to that the entire state was ragging free.
Asked to elaborate on the role of the college principal, health minister Rajiv Bindal said a magisterial probe had been ordered even as the police are investigated the case.
"The internal administration of medical colleges in the state will be improved," he said.
In another swift measure, principal secretary, health, Deepak Sanan said a new principal would also be appointed in the medical college where the incident took place to replace Suresh Sankhayan. The latter has offered to put in his papers in the wake of the shocking incident.
Expressing outrage over the incident, student bodies have held both the college administration and state government responsible for turning a blind eye to the problem of ragging that plagues other colleges as well.
In another incident last year, authorities failed to take deterrent action against students of Ayurveda College, Paprola, who were accused of brutally beating new entrants after taking them to a distant place beyond the college premises.