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UGC probe team soon
- Apex body expected to investigate ragging charges

Siliguri, Dec. 24: The UGC is expected to send a team to probe the ragging charges against 14 students of North Bengal University, sources in the institution said.

The University Grants Commission has been notified about the ragging in a varsity hostel and the apex body has plans to send a four-member team to probe the matter.

“Several apolitical bodies, political parties and students’ wings who are appalled by the inaction of varsity authorities against those involved in ragging have written to different government organisations and representatives on this matter. Some have even written to the UGC that, we have come to know, has taken cognisance of the issue and is planning to send a four-member team to probe the charges,” a varsity source said.

The incident of ragging at a hostel in NBU came to light when a first semester student of the philosophy department wrote to vice-chancellor Arunabha Basumajumdar about the physical and mental torture inflicted on him by seniors before leaving the campus on December 3.

On probing, the anti-ragging panel found 14 students were involved in ragging 17 juniors. However, the recommendations for rustication of six students and suspension and ouster from the hostel of eight others were turned down by majority members of the Executive Council in a vote on December 16.

The varsity authorities, however, denied having received any official intimation from the UGC.

“We have heard through sources that the apex body is planning to send a team to probe the ragging at the varsity. However there has been no official intimation from the UGC to us so far,” said Sushanta Das, the controller of examinations at NBU.

Student organisations like the Chhatra Parishad and the Trinamul Chhatra Parishad and several apolitical organisations have been mounting pressure on authorities to punish the culprits.

The CP has organised a one-day strike on Tuesday while the TMCP has threatened to shut down the varsity indefinitely if the recommendations are not followed.

Today, members of the Forum for Integration — a 300-member organisation of varsity faculty, staff and officials — wrote to governor M.K. Narayanan, complaining about the alleged indifference of the authorities to implement the recommendation of the anti-ragging panel.

The VC, too, had written to the governor, seeking his guidance on how to deal with the accused. The varsity said it has not received any response from Narayanan so far.

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