Sunday, August 14, 2011

Students vacate hostel to protest ragging charge

MALDA: On Saturday morning, a private college in Bolpur saw students leaving the hostel. In the evening, the same episode got repeated at Gour College in Malda. But the only difference between the two incidents is that while students were asked to vacate hostel in the first case, in the latter students thought it prudent to do so when charges of ragging was labelled against them.

Tension kicked off at the college when Kajal Mandal, a first-year Education (honours) student from Gajole, complained to the principal that he had been ragged physically at the hostel. Principal Dr Pranatosh Sen was quick to act and called some senior students to his chamber to resolve the issue. But the seniors claimed Kajal used to bring outsiders to the hostel and consume liquor, which was strictly against the hostel regulation. "He even threatens to bash up the seniors with the help of the outsiders," a senior student alleged.

However, Sen tried to sort out the difference and asked them to live peacefully. Soon after, they returned to Shibram Hostel and threatened Kajal for complaining to the principal. Untamed, Kajal rushed to the principal's chamber and apprised him of the situation. Sen then visited the hostel himself and warned the senior students against any high-handedness.

But this led to something that the principal didn't expect. The students protested against the principal and all the 69 students of the hostel, except Kajal, left the hostel with their luggage. They alleged that they were suffering from insecurity. One of the student said, "The principal did not listen to our pleas and took side of the one who falsely accused us. We are not secured in the hostel any more."

Sen, the embarrassed principal, said, "I did not get the information of all students leaving hostel. They might be going home for two-three days." Regarding his scolding the senior students, he said, "I have to take action if I get the complaint of ragging."

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