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Tutor slapped for low marks

- Students demanding ‘90 per cent’ attack ayurveda teacher

Students at an ayurvedic college, said to be backed by Trinamul, allegedly beat up a teacher on Monday for failing one of them and awarding less than 90 per cent marks to the rest.

Kedar Nath Sahoo, who has been teaching at JB Roy State Ayurvedic Medical College and Hospital in north Calcutta for 12 years, has lodged a police complaint stating that around 15 final-year students backed by the Trinamul-run union had assaulted him and smashed his car’s windshields and windowpanes. Sahoo has named a few accused in the complaint.

“My students assaulted me in full view of my patients and staff. I had never imagined that I would be subjected to such humiliation,” said Sahoo, the head of the panchakarma department at the college.

He alleged that the students who were demanding 90 per cent marks had hardly attended “10 classes”. Several teachers wondered why the students were allowed to take the test at a time the government is considering an attendance cut-off for those who want to contest college union elections.

The results of the Bachelor in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) were declared online on Saturday. One of the students could not clear the panchakarma paper after failing to score the minimum 50 per cent marks.

Sahoo was attending to patients on the second floor of the outpatient department around 11.30am when about 15 final-year students allegedly barged into the room and accused him of deliberately failing one student from the batch of 50. They were also angry with the professor for not awarding them 90 per cent marks.

“Even before I could reason with them, they started slapping and punching me on my face and head,” said the doctor.

The students then went downstairs and attacked his car — a Tata Sumo — that was parked near the main building, the teacher alleged. “The front and rear windshields, as well as the window panes, were smashed.”

Teacher-in-charge Gupteshwar Upadhyay, however, denied the incident despite Sahoo handing over a written complaint to him.

“I am unaware of any such incident,” said Upadhyay. When asked who had vandalised the car parked next to his office, he claimed he was in the dark.

Members of the students’ union, too, said no assault had taken place.

Sahoo’s colleagues alleged that the writ of Trinamul runs at the college. “I, too, was beaten up in the late 90s by students for the same reason. There is a history of teachers being targeted at the college, but such attacks have been more brazen since Trinamul captured the students’ union two years ago,” said a teacher of basic medicine.