Thursday, February 02, 2012

Hostel inmates rebel over eviction of 3 girls accused of ragging

NAGPUR: Girls from a government hostel thronged the social welfare office on Thursday and protested for the entire day after the warden evicted three senior girls for allegedly ragging two sisters. The evicted girls and rest of the hostel residents claimed the ragging allegations were false, and demanded that the seniors girls should be allowed back in the hostel. Finally, the three girls were allowed to stay till senior social welfare officials return from Mumbai.

Smita Kamde, Namrapali Gondane and Sangeeta Bankar, all students of LLM second year, were thrown out of the hostel after Shalini and Nalini Bagde alleged ragging and torture by them.

On Wednesday afternoon, the Bagde sisters, staying at a government hostel in Sakkardara, had alleged torture and ragging since last week by three senior girls. They had even gone to file a complaint at Sadar police station but were turned away. Police said a case could be registered only after the warden or other government official lodged a complaint.

On Thursday, the rest of the girls at the hostel raised slogans and marched to the divisional commissioner's officer to protest the eviction of three senior girls. However, they were turned away since the commissioner was not in the city. The protesting girls were also sent back from the police commissioner's office as police chief Ankush Dhanvijay was busy in a meeting. Later, the girls reached Sadar police station where they were assured of proper action against the warden.

"There was no ragging at all. The Bagde sisters are lying," said Sangeeta. The girls said that a few months ago these three seniors had complained and protested against the then warden Rajni Vaidya for harassing and forcing them to do extra work at the hostel. "She would abuse us and threaten to oust us from the hostel. Hence, the seniors complained about her and she was suspended," said Sangeeta.

Shalini claims that since she and her sister did not support the seniors in the complaint against Vaidya, they accused Nalini of stealing a cell phone and beat her in front of other girls.

The other girls however allege that since Vaidya is a distant relative of the Bagde sisters, she might have forced the sisters to file a complaint against the girls.

Lajwanti Singar, present warden of the hostel, denied any ragging happened in the hostel. She said that till higher officials return from Mumbai, all the girls will be allowed to stay in the hostel. Social welfare officer Siddharth Gaikwad did not pick up phone calls.

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