Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Ragging snowballs into kidnapping; seven held

Ragging of juniors by students of an engineering college in Gummidipoondi took an ugly turn and ended in the alleged kidnapping of one of the students. Thirumangalam police have arrested seven youngsters, including six students of the college and a former student, on charges including kidnap and assault. Speaking to The Hindu, Frank D. Ruban, Thirumangalam inspector, said tension erupted between third and final-year students of RMK Engineering College in Kavarappettai, on the campus, after the final-year students repeatedly ragged their juniors. “To put an end to this situation prevailing for a long time, third-year students Bharat (20) and Ramasubbu Reddy (20) went to meet fourth-year student Manoj Kumar (21) in his flat in Anna Nagar on Wednesday,” Mr. Ruban added. But as soon as they reached there, Manoj along with his classmates Navin (21), Pavan (21) and Srinivasa Teja, a former student of RMK College, assaulted Bharat and Ramasubbu and chased them away.

The enraged juniors and their classmates Rahul Reddy (20), along with some men called in from their village in Andhra Pradesh, went to Manoj’s flat on Friday. The group found Manoj’s brother Bharat Kumar (19) and his friends Vishnuvardhan (19) and Kousal Reddy (19) in the flat and assaulted them. They kidnapped Bharat Kumar hoping that his brother would come looking for him. The youngsters were heading towards Andhra Pradesh. “After realising that police were on the lookout for them, Bharat, Ramasubbu and Rahul returned to the city with Bharat Kumar. We intercepted them at Shanti Colony early on Saturday. Bharat Kumar was rescued,” Mr. Ruban said. Following a complaint by Bharat Kumar, police arrested Bharat, Ramasubbu and Rahul on charges of kidnap, while senior students Manoj, Navin, Pavan and ex-student Srinivasa Teja were arrested for assault.

The students were lodged in Saidapet sub-jail and Teja was sent to Puzhal prison. However, R.M. Kishore, vice chairman, RMK Engineering College, said the incident was not a case of ragging and was only an outcome of personal animosity between the students. “It occurred outside the college campus, and after college hours. It has nothing to do with the college,” he said, adding that the institute had an anti-ragging committee that checked for cases on the campus. “Ragging is strictly prohibited on our campus and offenders are dealt with very strictly.” Keywords: Gummudipoondi kidnapping, ragging, anti-ragging laws, senior-junior relationship, college life

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