Sunday, June 21, 2009

Sister feels ragging at camp took her life

This was all 21-year-old Sneha Dani had told her sister, Shejal, after returning from a college camp in January. But she did not divulge the details to Shejal in the past four months, and now, she never would.
Sneha allegedly committed suicide on Friday by jumping off the terrace of the seventh-floor Nepean Sea Road apartment she shared with her sister. Their parents stay in Udhagamandalam, where they won a tea factory.
Shejal told DNA on Sunday that Sneha, a second-year BCom student at Sydenham College, had gone to the camp in Dahanu on January 10 with her college mates. "When she came back on January 17, she was in a state of shock. She would just sit quietly... Whenever I gave her food to eat, she behaved as though she had forgotten how to eat. I kept asking her what happened," said Shejal. "But the only answer I got was, 'I want to tell you something...'."
She said there were injury marks on Sneha's forearm and toes when she returned home from the camp. "She called me one night from the camp. She was crying hysterically. I kept asking her what was wrong, but Sneha said she would tell me after coming back home," she said.
Before she left for the camp, Sneha had no problem with her health, said her sister. "But after coming back from the camp, she had to be taken to the King Edward Memorial Hospital, where she was treated for schizophrenia."
All this has made Shejal almost certain that something went horribly wrong at the camp, and made Sneha a changed person. "Perhaps, she was very badly ragged," said Shejal. "All the time she used to say that she wants to tell me about something that happened in the camp."
The only bit of information which Sneha gave to Shejal was that her best friend treated her badly at the camp and her roommates harassed her.
Shejal is trying to convince her parents to lodge a police complaint against the people who were with Sneha at the camp. "I want to know what exactly happened there. I want justice for Sneha," said Shejal. Asked whether they would file a case, she said that she was discussing the issue with her parents.
Sydenham College principal MB Agalkar, when contacted by DNA, said she was not aware of the incident of Sneha committing suicide, and would not be able to make any comment until the college reopens on Monday.

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