Monday, March 16, 2009

Time to get rid of this bane

Within months, it is soon going to be that time of the year again when a new session will start in colleges and again a generation will leap forward towards the first step of defining their independent life, and once again we shall have to read and hear instances of this dreadful menace so casually termed as "Ragging".

Less than a week after a medical student lost his life to ragging in Himachal Pradesh, another girl, an agricultural engineering student in Guntur -AP attempted suicide after being ragged in the college hostel. And, just two days back I saw this disruptive news flash on my television screen.

Similarly when in a hostel in MP, students are taken out of their rooms and beaten up in what one would call "orgies of physical assault" and the protesting students are pushed out of the first floor window, in the middle of the night,then as well, we shouldn’t deny ignorance. There are several such heinous acts that take place everywhere, and we shouldn’t be amazed by them too, rather delve deep into a pool of shame, if we have any left, as these incidents continue to happen throughout the country, across all the states in a number of colleges and universities.

Talk about ragging with someone and the first argument put forth is that it helps the seniors and freshers to "interact". Is that the word we use to justify the humiliation of an individual by a fellow human?

The proponents of ragging further argue that it promotes 'openness' and 'friendship'. And yet, our closest friends are those who are chagrined in front of us. Isn’t it? Weren't the best of friendships supposed to be cultivated through mutual respect and sustained through love & care?

"It makes us bold and teaches us the 'reality' of the harsh life ahead" is put forth as another point in its favor. Life has its own ways of letting us know that we need to get stronger & I think it does not take any senior to hurt my pride for me to find that out. The reasons for supporting ragging are, simply put, ridiculous. The victim, many a times, loses all self-respect that he or she has cultivated over the years in the blink of an eye, being forced to do something which he or she would never dream of doing in the normal course of events.

I don't think there can be anything more barbaric than forcing someone to perform these disgusting acts & supporting such moves in the name of "Interaction". Interaction my foot! Interaction is possible only when we give the other person their due respect & both the parties are kept at an equal footing. Interaction means discussion & sharing views, not imposing them. Interaction produces light, not heat!

We all want to project our opinions and experiences onto the world around us, and the junior most students being the most vulnerable targets become the scapegoats. Nine times out of ten, 'tradition' is the word used to defend such repugnant actions, but shouldn’t traditions be changed and modified depending upon the needs of the people? Should Sati still continue? Shouldn’t Dowry be abolished ?

Ragging has been plaguing our education system for too long a time now. Only a willingness to understand the shortcomings of the existing system is needed as a driving force to end this practice & look for better alternatives. An unknown but significantly large number of people have been affected in some way or the other by this blind annual custom.Isn’t it time that we stop imposing our sadistic whims and fancies upon others? Isn’t it time that we break off this unjustifiable tradition?

The answer is of course- YES, because otherwise it would be a slap on the face of our so-called civilized and educated society and certainly not all, but there would be numerous others having sleepless nights, re-living the humiliation that they went through, for a day, a week or God knows, how long....


  1. Wowo..that was an article Anubha...Are u a journalist??

  2. grt job..actually have faced d same nd so knw hw it feels...

  3. Thanks Diana! Well, am not a journalist in any ways- just an engineer in making :)