Educational institutions must have a robust anti-ragging cell: SP Seema Latkar
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Educational institutions must have a robust anti-ragging cell: SP Seema Latkar

September 15, 2023

Mysore/Mysuru: Superintendent of Police (SP) in Mysuru Seema Latkar has emphasised the importance of having a robust anti-ragging cell in all educational institutions, stressing that ragging is not a trivial matter that can be ignored.

She mentioned that students who become victims of ragging undergo significant mental and physical trauma, and it can take them years to recover. Tragically, some students are unable to endure the harassment and resort to ending their lives, while many silently endure the humiliation.

She made these remarks during a session on anti-ragging and anti-sexual harassment held at DePaul College in the city on Sept. 13, in collaboration with RedFM Mysuru. Ragging refers to any form of physical or psychological abuse, humiliation, or harassment inflicted by seniors or peers on new students. These laws are designed to ensure safety and well-being of students and create a conducive learning environment.

The SP highlighted that although the Karnataka Education Act introduced anti-ragging laws about ten years ago, their impact was minimal at the time. However, as cases of serious nature involving both boys and girls subjected to ragging incidents began to surface, discussions started about establishing guidelines, as critical as those for suicide prevention, for those who suffered severe consequences.

Seema Latkar underlined that having a strong anti-ragging cell in every educational institution is crucial, as the fate of ragging victims largely depends on how such incidents are handled, and the outcomes can be uncertain. Ragging can have significant psychological and physical consequences on the individuals affected, the SP noted.

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Initially, there were no specific regulations or laws against ragging, and cases were filed under IPC Section 323. However, there is now a dedicated law in place. Today, even without an FIR (First Information Report), there are laws and regulations to take action against ragging, ensuring that no one can escape the consequences. Seema Latkar also revealed that a rowdy sheet can be opened against perpetrators even without an FIR.

“Ragging in any form is strictly prohibited, and educational institutions are required to take measures to prevent and eliminate ragging. Those found guilty of ragging may face severe consequences, including suspension,expulsion, fines and even imprisonment. Also, there are mechanisms for anonymous reporting of ragging incidents where the identity of complainants is protected,” the SP added.

Developing a positive attitude among students is essential for their personal growth and well-rounded development. Incorporating art, culture and reading into education can have a profound impact on students’ holistic development, nurturing not only their intellectual abilities but also their emotional and social well-being. These activities can contribute to a positive attitude, empathy and a well-rounded perspective on life, she told the students.

Principal of DePaul College Rev. Dr. Baiju Antony, Vice-Principal Rev. Fr. Aneesh Xavier, Cluster Manager of RedFM Mysuru B.V. Raghav and others were present. The session was attended by students from DePaul College and higher secondary students from DePaul International School.

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