**Bhubaneswar: ** Despite a blanket ban imposed and even after the Supreme Court’s stricture on campus ragging across India, Odisha has earned a dubious distinction countrywide for being in the 4th position so far the illegal act of ragging in campus is concerned.
It has been ranked by the Union Human Resources Development Ministry based on the reports from 2013 to 2017 with the University Grants Commission (UGC). Out of the total 3022 complaints lodged with the UGC during the 5 years, Odisha’s ragging complaints stand at 207.
OMMCOM NEWS tried to delve into the serious issue in a bid to find out the reason behind such a blot on the sacred academic milieu.
On the sidelines of historic Ravenshaw University’s Education Department’s Diamond Jubilee function, Odisha Governor Prof Ganeshi Lal to a media query on the solution remarked, “The day the system of education successfully teaches that Maa Bhagabati (Divine Mother) dwells in the very soul of each and every student, this (ragging) will vanish.”
Ravenshaw University Vice-Chancellor Prof Ishan Kumar Patro claimed, “Our campus is zero ragging campus. We are very much vigilant. Unfortunately if it surfaces, stringent action will be taken. The previous complaints were not of ragging but of group clash. It’s not ragging.”
He stated, “During the orientation programme we sensitise the students against it. The students play a major role to curb it. Entire campus is replete with anti-ragging posters. We’re going to constitute a strong anti-ragging committee of the teachers. We are ready to give our campus under the security of Odisha Industrial Security Force (OISF). Without car pass and without card, it will be very hard to enter the campus in the next two months.”
Odisha Higher Education Minister Ananta Das reacted, “I’m ignorant of the HRD report on ragging in Odisha. Since I’ve been the Higher Education Minister, not a single ragging complaint has been received by me till date. I can’t comment how true or false the HRD report is. I have not got a single petition on ragging.”
“After receipt of the report, we’ll definitely take strong action and punish the culprits,” he quipped.
Prof Pratap Rath, Utkal University Psychology Department head and specialist in Clinical Psychology & Counselling, in his reactions fumed, “Those who resort to ragging are absolutely insecure and plagued by inferiority complex cum inhumane vices. The Constitution of India has bestowed each one with the right of leading a dignified life with self respect. It means right to equality and status.”
“Ragging adversely affects the victim. No one has the right to hurt and kill another’s life, be it a big scholar, sportsman or any other big shot. Taking undue advantage of seniority, certain persons of vices commit so, be it male or female student. Generally they do it in a group. The new comers fall prey to the tantrums and vices. The new comers should also unite and resist the so-called rowdy seniors,” he stated.
The experienced teacher observed, “But it is a matter great regret that the victims of today turn aggressors of tomorrow and commit the same ragging they have already suffered.”
Rama Devi University History (Hons) student Subhashree Behera said, “In Odisha it is happening because there is yawning gap between the senior and junior students. The seniors look down upon them. If the seniors teat their juniors as own brothers and sisters, ragging will obviously get checked.”
Utkal University MA first year student Ashok Kumar Mallick said, “It’s condemnable for Odisha being in the 4th position in ragging. The senior should treat the juniors as own younger brothers and sisters. Juniors should be extended all types of support. Ragging in Odisha must be curbed. The Odisha Government should take strict step against ragging.”
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