Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A short film "Anarth" on ragging screened: By the students, for the society

Punjab Newsline Network
Monday, 12 October 2009

NEW DELHI: Often, the death of a social evil is initiated, when the suffering community itself takes the first steps in uprooting the evil. This has started to happen in the case of ragging. Three students from Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology have come up with a short film on ragging to sensitize the civil society about this problems which students are facing across the country.

The film, "Anarth: In the name of Education" was released on 11th October, which is observed as the Nationwide No Ragging Day. Four years back, Amit Sahai, a student at NIT Jalandhar killed himself by jumping in front of a train due to brutal ragging.

The film was screened at the auditorium at Delhi Public School, RK Puram at 11am on 11th October by CURE: Coalition to Uproot Ragging from Education (www.noragging.com). More than hundred people from all wakes of life including parents, teachers, professionals and students attended the screening. A 2-minutes silence was observed in the beginning of the event in respect of all who lost their lives due to ragging and many others who are suffering. Dr. Saini, Principal, DPS (RK Puram) addressed the audience for a short while describing the various practical steps taken by the school to make hostels absolutely ragging-free.

The audience saw the 35 minute movie with rapt attention. The movie showed interview of two ragging victims who narrated their tale of horror on camera. They also discussed the apathy of the college authorities, how their friends at other campuses suffered and how the anti-ragging squad was totally ineffective. The movie showed statistics that the number of reported cases of ragging has increased dramatically after the supreme court judgment. Finally, the movie talked about how through a ‘call of conscience' the menace of ragging can be controlled.

The movie was followed by an Open House, where audience participated in a question-answer session. A faculty member from NSIT (Delhi), Dr. Duru Arun Kumar pointed towards the responsibility of the faculty in curbing ragging and how they should play an active role to curb the menace. There was a consensus amongst the group that the film should be shown in each and every college of the country to sensitize students against the menace. Many from the audience stated that they did not know that ragging could be that bad and so many people have suffered due to it.

Bhavesh, Akshay and Abhinav, the creators of the video are volunteers for CURE: Coalition to Uproot Ragging from Education (http://www.noragging.com/) and started working on the video six months back. The thirty minutes film is based on the interview of two students, who faced continuous ragging at their college, but never disclosed it to anyone including their parents. The interviews were shot by Sukanksha and Vaibhav, who are also students and volunteers with CURE.

"If one scans through the number of ragging incidents that have taken place in the last two months, they will be shocked. The numbers are as high as those reported in the last complete one year. Despite all judgments, the problem is here to stay and we need a call to conscience to end this problem", says Harsh Agarwal, Co-founder, CURE.

The final message of the film is that espoused by the Mahatma, "We can be the change". This film indeed can be the change.

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