Siliguri, June 26: A second-year post-graduate student of North Bengal University has alleged that he was “ragged” by a Trinamul Chhatra Parishad leader, an outsider, and a first-year MBA student in a hostel on the campus last night.
Raju Sarkar has claimed that he was “mentally and physically tortured” by Pankaj Sinha, the TMCP leader in-charge of the varsity who is not a student of NBU, and Tirthankar Mukherjee for staying in a Chhatra Parishad leader’s house. Sarkar and Mukherjee are both members of the student wing of the Trinamul Congress.
In an FIR lodged with the Matigara police station today, Sarkar, a student of geography, alleged that he had been “ragged” for an hour in one of the hostel rooms when he refused to shift from the CP leader’s house where he was staying as a tenant.
“Although I am a TMCP supporter, I have a lot of friends who belong to the CP (the student wing of the Congress) in the varsity. I have been staying at Ronald Dey’s house as a tenant for the past seven months. Last night, Pankaj called me to Tirthankar’s room on the ground floor of the hostel. The two of them started threatening me with dire consequences if I did not leave Ronald’s house immediately. I told them it was impossible since I am preparing for PG exams scheduled to begin on July 4,” said Sarkar.
“They forced me to drink alcohol and hit me with a belt on my back several times. They also stubbed burning cigarette on my left arm and snipped off my hair with a blade. When I tried to escape they caught hold of my T-shirt and tore it,” said Sarkar, a resident of Asuragarh in North Dinajpur.
Dey is a second-year PG English student and the unit secretary of the CP at the university. Sinha has denied the allegations and dubbed it a ploy of a “section of TMCP supporters” who wanted him to give up his post.
“Sarkar has made the allegations at the behest of a section of TMCP supporters who want me removed from the post of the varsity in-charge. All accusations against me are baseless. I had met Sarkar around 5pm at Shivmandir (local market) but not after that. I did not visit the hostel last night so the question of ragging does not arise,” said Sinha.
NBU authorities said an inquiry had been initiated. “We are taking the matter seriously as it involves ragging by an outsider along with a student in the hostel at an odd hour. Tirthankar’s room is locked now, he has left the hostel,” said Rathin Banerjee, the hostel superintendent.
The police have acknowledged that a complaint was filed by the NBU student.
North Bengal development minister Gautam Deb is not ready to buy the charge that the TMCP has been targeting CP members since Trinamul came to power in the state.
“Whatever happened at the university is unfortunate. Ragging by a TMCP leader is an isolated incident. Such instances had not taken place in the state after we formed the government. So, it would be wrong to say that the TMCP is using force against the CP after Trinamul came to power in the state,” said Deb.