Shameful 12-hour ragging ordeal at BAU

Fresher beaten up, tonsured; vice chancellor rusticates PG trio

Victim Gautam Kumar (right) reports the incident to police in Ranchi on Sunday. Telegraph picture

The Telegraph reports that a first-year student of Birsa Agricultural University (BAU), Kanke, was allegedly ragged for 12 hours from last night at a hostel room, prompting the expulsion of three postgraduate students late last night. The student, Gautam Kumar (20),  who was treated extremely humiliatingly had joined the BAU at Kanke, Jharkand recently only on November 21. He had enrolled for the First-year BSc Forestry course. He was allegedly thrashed and had his head tonsured by first-year MSc forestry students in acts of humiliation that started at 9pm on Saturday night and lasted till 9am on Sunday, December 4.
Gautam, the victim of this brute behaviour by fellow students, who has been sent home to Ranchi's Ratu Road and asked to report to BAU three days later, stressed it was only ragging. "Around 9pm yesterday, I was summoned by drunk seniors to a room at Saranda Hostel of BAU. I was severely beaten up through the night and my hair was cut off this morning. My back hurts," Gautam
Acting swiftly, BAU vice chancellor and agriculture secretary Nitin Madan Kulkarni tonight rusticated three students – Firoz Ahmad, Prashant Kumar and Prabhat Kumar Singh – whom Gautam had identified earlier as his tormentors."It is a serious incident and can't be tolerated. The trio stand rusticated," Kulkarni said.A dean claimed this was the first such incident in the institute that was inaugurated in 1981 by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
Gautam, who was forced this morning to confess in writing he abused his seniors which resulted in the beating, did not cower but complained to BAU authorities and Kanke police. A four-member BAU inquiry committee headed by forestry department dean Mahadeo Mahto, recommended immediate rustication of three students, inmates of Saranda Hostel, whom Gautam had managed to identify.

"The committee comprising myself, dean of students' welfare N.K. Roy, dean of agriculture Raghav Thakur and forestry department head M.H. Siddiqui concurred that prima facie, ragging had taken place," Mahto said."We submitted our recommendation to BAU vice chancellor and agriculture secretary Nitin Madan Kulkarni," Mahto added.

Probe is on to zero in on two others, who Gautam said were involved in the act but could not be identified."It seems five students were involved, but since the victim could identify three, action was initiated only against them. Once the other two are identified, similar action will be taken against them too," Mahto stressed.

In another twist to the gory incident, Kanke sub-inspector Meera Singh, who acted on Gautam's FIR and came to the campus this afternoon for a probe, found another story waiting for her.

"At least seven first-year students confessed to me that they beat up their classmate Gautam. They alleged Gautam was in the habit of stealing money and that they had beaten him up after many found their cash missing. The victim, however, alleges that he was ragged and beaten up by his seniors. This calls for a complete investigation," sub-inspector Singh said.



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