Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Marine engineering cadet lands in hospital after ragging

KOLKATA: A 19-year-old marine engineering cadet is lying seriously injured in hospital with severe jaw, hip and head injuries after being brutally beaten up by two seniors on Wednesday.

The youth, who had cracked IIT-JEE to get a berth at Indian Maritime University in Taratala, was assaulted because he could not endure a three-hour-long 'physical exercise' session that is merely a garb for ragging by seniors.

The boy cannot move or speak. The doctors treating him are horrified by the severity of the beating.
TOI is withholding the identity of the victim and the two alleged raggers on his request. The teenager is determined to return to training once he gets well. "I worked hard to get here. So there is no reason to back out. With the support of teachers, friends, seniors and my family I am sure I will sail again. I just hope there is some limit to the ragging meted out to freshers," he told TOI, struggling to whisper each word.
The Delhi boy joined the prestigious institute around eight months ago. Since then he and all first-year students have been subjected to regular ragging sessions. According to them, only two seniors are involved in the sadistic torture.
On Wednesday morning, many freshers were pulled out of their beds at 4am by the duo and given physical exercises - push-ups, crawls and frog-jumps - for three hours. Towards the end, the Delhi boy collapsed on the ground, exhausted, and pleaded with the two third-year students to let him go just one time. But the two rained blows and slaps on him. He was hit some 40 times in the face. "I got an SMS from my son about the incident around 7.30am. His mother fainted on hearing this. I booked a ticket on the first available flight to Kolkata," said father P K Mishra, a central government employee.
He reached the hospital around 2pm and was shocked to see the bruises and injuries on his son's body. "Can you imagine? Forty continuous slaps in the face and several punches to his head and the back? He is unable to move. I immediately complained to the hostel warden verbally as being with him in hospital was more important," he said.
Doctors at Calcutta Medical Research Institute (CMRI) said the boy will need long-term treatment. "There are injuries to the jaw, hip joint and head because of punches and blows. He is unable to move properly because of the hip injury and unable to eat and speak because of the jaw injury" said Dr T K Banerjee, who is treating him.
"Investigation is on to gauge the severity of the injuries. The boy might not need surgery. I am shocked to see such physical torture on a young boy. Those involved in the ragging should be given exemplary punishment," said CMRI consultant surgeon Dr P K Nemani.
Some students said that it is an unwritten rule in the institute for third-year students to rag freshers almost throughout the year. No one is supposed to report it to the authorities. But this time, the two seniors went a little too far. Most fourth-year students are out sailing. "The hostel warden and some fourth-year students who are back on the campus have recommended that these two students be punished," said a fourth-year student on condition of anonymity.
The Delhi boy had told his father about the continuous ragging but asked him not to complain to the authorities because he was not the only victim. All his batch-mates were being ragged. "The authorities have promised to take action against the guilty. In that case I will not file a complaint as I do not want a bad name for a prestigious institute like this," said Mishra.

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