Things Fall Apart

Turning and turning in the widening gyre; The falcon cannot hear the falconer;

Things fall apart; the center cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

The best lack all conviction; while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.-

– Y.B.Yeats

Another victim of ragging died on Sunday night.

Late on Friday night, Ajay, Naveen, Abhinav and Mukul severely assaulted Aman Satya Kachru, a first-year student from Jammu, in the college hostel on the pretext of ragging. On Sunday afternoon, Aman complained of a pain in the chest, and was taken to hospital. He died after a few hours, at 8.30 pm.”

In a complaint lodged with college authorities on Sunday, Aman named all four seniors. He said they were drunk, and had slapped, kicked and punched him.”

Several other first year students were also ragged that night and several have complained in writing to the College authorities.

Just last month the Supreme Court said that a student prima facie found guilty of indulging in such an actwould invite immediate suspension and an educational institution trying to shield such an errant student would lose grants in aid.”

It said criminal law has to be set into motion immediately by informing the police about the incident of ragging and any institution found guilty of shielding the culprit will have to face the consequences.”

It further said that guidelines and regulations should be indicated to the students at the time of admission by appropriate provision in the prospectus. “The consequences which flow from not observing the guidelines shall also be indicated,” the Bench said.

The directions were based on the recommendations of the apex court appointed committee headed by former CBI Director R K Raghavan..



The website of CURECoalition to Uproot Ragging from Education -has compiled disturbing statistics on ragging in Indian educational institutions.

These are the statistics for 2005-2007 as given by CURE.

Deaths due to ragging 11

Suicide Attempts 10

Injury 23

Detrimental effect on Mental Health 12

Victim left College 5

Violence and Indiscipline 10

Many Circulars and guidelines have been issued declaring ragging a violation of Human Rights.

The Central and state governments have passed various laws seeking to curtail ragging.

But nothing seems to stop college students from ragging weaker or new students under the pretext of “having some fun”.

Has the dismal world described by Yeats become a reality in India? Do we think nothing of letting a fellow human being lose his life because we want to “have some fun”? Have we lost all sense of the values that differentiate us from animals?

And now where do we go from here? Further down the slope of lawlessness and depravity, or will we make the effort to somehow find our way back to civilization?

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26 thoughts on “Things Fall Apart”

  1. It is really heart-breaking to see the parents of that young boy cry at their tragic loss due to this mindless tradition that is not dying despite serious efforts made all round. I don’t know why as a nation we have retained the worst of what the British left behind and shed the good.I think there is a need to give exemplary punishments to raggers – and not only if someone dies. Even injury should be taken very seriously. Once people get the message that their own lives and careers are at stake, they will desist. The deterrent has to be effective.And since this has nothing to do with terrorism, nobody will say that existing provisions are adequate.

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  2. Fun has became a very twisted phenomenon. In this world, i feel that someone’s tragedy is someone’s fun. I think that the perception of cold laughter as happiness is also worsening the situation. I need here to mention an incident.A few days back, i went at a school for some purpose. Outside school, when examination was over, a person, his wife, and their daughter fell off from their scooter due to negligence of a person reversing his car. Though the people from car came outside to help them, but i was very sad to witness some students of 10th grade sharing laugh over that incident. I don’t know how they are able to do that.This world has just became like an open zoo. We witness weird things around. The saddest part is the disgusting chain. The powerful and rich maniacs gallop the powerless and poor. It can also be inferred that those which were indulged in beating up might belong to some influential families; for them flaunting power is fun.Regarding the statistics, i believe the actual numbers of sufferings could be very large, we all know our system well enough. This incident became a news coz the victim died. There might be many more helplessly witnessing the live death of their self respect !!

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  3. Ragging is sick . And worse is when the students who were ragged , rag their juniors , for vengeance . It is like a vicious cycle , you get ragged , and you are ragged in turn . Fortunately , I was not ragged at all in my first year . The worst thing that happened to us , zero degree haircut , chappals and trousers and full sleeve shirts only , for the first 3 months . And we had to be ready with our complete intro , in Hindi . I had no idea Computer Science and Engineering was Sangank Vigyan evam Abhiyantriki . And I can proudly say that I never ragged anyone . My college was extra cautious about this .

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  4. It is one of the most horrendous activities that occurs in college life. I cant fathom how some of the people argue that this promotes bonding !This is horrific and invasive. Forget Murder ! And of all of these, this is a bunch of folks who are studying to be doctors..Sad state !

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  5. I also wanted to write on it!! And you have expressed with statistics also. Thanks for that.There is no harsh words to express my anguish on this incident. Ragging is now becoming common in colleges. Look at the recent movies on college students they also show the mental torture to the fresher is okay to get fun with. Here what they want to prove? Many innocent students come from villages or small town with lots of dreams, ambitions but when they reach the college doors they found it nothing less than hell. Both physical and mental torture is crime and both are not to be supported. This not going to build the nation.While educational institutes are meant for building valuable citizens to the nation it is creating monsters who gets fun if somebody else is in tragedy and ignores it.There are however as all know many strong laws against this. But they can not reach each rooms of college hostel and also not strong enough to watch the activities of each student. In my college also there were many strict rules still ragging was never stopped. Of course it lessened the number. My view is we can not stop ragging only by putting laws not even by putting whole police force inside college campus. Because at the young age that too as a student mindset of the students will of resisting nature which opposes all the law on it. So they will find the way to rag may be only to break the law!! So building brotherhood/sisterhood relationship between juniors and seniors are to be given more concern. This initiative should be taken from institutes. Now the purpose of education is also limited to getting a certificate, which does not look into the social conduct of the student. However this issue is also needs to be addressed. So that a student turns to a true citizen of the nation

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  6. drinking at that age, threwin up and talking abt it the next day has become a fashion thing in universities….believe me or not! young guys 17/18 are made to watch porn on name of ragging [ i und we need to have sex education but not in nastiest way possible….i heard from my friends and collegues and they r disasterous!]they are made to drink and slap each other in name of ragging…..and shud say it sometimes gets to girls even! dont know where this stuff is going….i have so much to say that it might seem irrelavant to us now!…..i dont know….somehow i dont agree that we are getting westernised…we just pick the bad bits everywhere and say its westernisation!

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  7. When I read about it on NDTV website last night with the victim’s picture, I froze. So many victims and banning still it continues. I know a family whose son was ragged and shamed which forced him to commit suicide in his 1st MBBS year. Then there was this case in Madras where a boy was killed because of ragging so the perpetrators cut his body into pieces then put in different bags to drop at various garbage areas through out Madras. They were caught of course. No idea about the outcome of the case. We were ragged and we too ragged our juniors but it was just simple sing a song or dance a bit. Some people just doesn’t know where to draw the line.

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  8. Ragging was mainly done to meet up seniors & get to know them in a fun fashion. Sadly it has changed meaning.Studying to be doctors meant to save lives ,they were brutal to a fresher even seems savage. A bitter lesson still not learnt.

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  9. Vinodji- I agree, punishment should be given to those indulging in ragging and should be widely publicized also. There is a dangerous tendency to shrug off ragging as an inherent part of campus life- particularly at colleges teaching professional courses.R.K.- Yes, people nowadays seem to have a twisted idea of fun. How degraded have we become that we like to laugh at another’s suffering?Kislay- Yes, it becomes a vicious circle! Sort of like the Daughter-in-law who has been treated badly by her Mother-in-law. She in turn may make life a hell for her own DIL when she herself becomes a MIL.Kavi- Yes, so sad that some people actually defend this practice which may turn into a tragedy for some unfortunate students!

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  10. Pangala Nagendra Rao- I agree with your view that we can not stop ragging only by putting laws in place. We must try to change the mindset of students, and the initiative has to come from the institutions themselves. In most colleges the authorities do not concern themselves with ragging, etc., unless an extreme incident like death of a student takes place.Sahaja- Very true that this is not really westernization. It has become a fashion to say that anything objectionable is western. Why do we imitate most of the bad customs of other countries and not the good ones?BTW- Good to see you after such a long time!Solilo- I can not even imagine the kind of hell that the victims’ families must go through. So very sad!

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  11. Indyeah- Yes many of us have seen this sort of thing happen! I know a boy who ran away from a prestigious institute because of extreme ragging.Rashmi- Yes, it is so sad how the concept of getting to know the new students has turned into something brutal.Anrosh- I too, stayed in a hostel with very strict rules, during my college years- so no problem of ragging!

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  12. Manju, I was viewing the episode on CNN-IBN last night and was shocked by this incident. If you heard his father, he was clear – this wasnt ragging it was a criminal activity going on unchecked. The boy had complained to the college authorities and they ought to have handled this better. If youngsters cannot draw the line between fun kind of ragging like sing a song or dance to a tune, we need to stop acknowledging the practice called “ragging” and book cases of bullying, assault whatever it actually amounts to.

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  13. i cant understand where the idea of ragging came from.. its such a pointless activity.. i got pretty badly ragged in the first yr, but thankfully not as bad as some of the cases we encounter in the papers..n i went to a girls; college!!medical n engineering colleges are horrrrrid i hear..

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  14. Ragging is a legacy from the British and we have faithfully carried the tradition ahead.I was never in a hostel and therefore do not have first hand experience of being ragged first and then ragging later.Apart from the guilty students, the college and hostel authorities should be sacked and arrested for their negligence. It is a given that with every fresh intake of students the seniors will swoop down and try to rag the juniors. Vigilance and exemplary punishment would have broken this vicious cycle.

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  15. What a tragedy! Makes me burn in anguish and anger. How can humans do this to another in the name of fun?? Hitting and punching anpther is ‘fun’?? Those who think so should go ahead and get themselves kicked and punched and enjoty the fun. I wonder what sort of human beings these are who feel justified in resorting to such form of ragging. I mean how deranged must be their minds. Like mentioned in a comment above, the new students are forced to watch porn, drink, slap each other, take drugs…. the list goes on. And they call it ragging, getting to know each other, fun. Wah! The best thing how some of them justify ragging. Well I have this to ask, do students who don’t have to face ragging grow up to be any better or worse than other students?? And what gives the senior students the right to think that it is in their hands to shape the juniors and that too in such a brutal manner??I am so upset reading this.

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  16. Ragging is horrible!!!I’m a victim…In fact, my photograph (being ragged) appeared on the front page of of HT and another evening paper…Thankfully, the ragging wasn’t physical but psychological…I’ve heard horrendous stories about ragging in my college hostel…Thank god I was day scholar…

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  17. Rao, legalisation against ragging exists in maharashtra. but when i was studying 13 years ago ( there was no legalisation), the institution authorities enforced their own rules and i don’t think anybody would wanted to take any punishment!Going home expelled would have been greater ragging!Because of enforcement, the freshies would be left out alone by themselves in the first semester. No seniors would talk to them!initation with “fun and simple activities” to break the ice is required otherwise freshies have a halo around their head thinking that they have conqered the world! Ragging is an abuse.

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  18. Gopinathji- Yes, it is painful even to view the report on television. What the parents must be going through!Mandira- It must be a bad experience to be ragged- I’m sorry you had to go through that. I hear the same, that engineering and medical colleges are the worst.Mavin- I agree the college authorities should be held accountable in some way. It seems that the Supreme court has agreed upon the broad guidelines regarding punishment for ragging.But they have not been put in place as law yet.

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  19. Shail- Yes this is a tragedy.Every time I learn about an incident like this I think- it could have been my son or daughter or niece in such a situation. No young student should have to become a victim of ragging.

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  20. Even a boy in my college attempted suicide the last semester . The security has been tightened ever since , so much that even interaction with juniors is not possible until about one month from the start of the sems . The laws are so strict that even a word of a fresher can get his senior into a world of trouble .

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  21. I was never ragged in my college. The environment there was very strict and the seniors were afraid of the fines they had to pay if they broke the rules! Discipline does improve the educational standards, I believe. But later on in life, one is always ragged. But then, they become old enough to handle such stuff. I think during the college, the students are more emotionally sensitive and hence this ragging stuff ought to be strictly banned.Destination Infinity

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  22. Destination Infinity- Welcome! I agree, we can say that later in life one is ragged. But is the ragging to such an extent that a person loses his life or commits suicide? Ragging in educational institutions has passed all limits.

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