Cuttack, Feb. 28: Boarders of Ravenshaw University’s East Hostel today launched an indefinite hunger strike criticising the authorities’ decision to suspend four students, including two of their fellow hostel mates for two years, for their alleged involvement in a campus clash on Monday.
They want the varsity officials to reconsider their decision, as it would have an adverse impact on the career of students debarred from appearing for four semesters.
“We will continue our hunger strike as the authorities have been harsh on us. The students of New PG hostel, who started the quarrel, have been let off with a fine,” said Sanjiv Prusty, a boarder of East Hostel.
Trouble started on Monday evening after student groups from the two hostels had a minor argument that snowballed into a major clash. While three motorcycles were damaged, one computer science student sustained injuries. Last evening, the authorities suspended third-year commerce students, Priyajit Rayguru and Sushant Sethi, both boarders of East Hostel, and second-year day scholars, Amiya Ranjan Sahu and Seshadhar Das, till April 2015.
A fine of Rs 2,000 each was slapped on two New PG hostel boarders, Nigamananda Swain of first-year geology, and Abhijit Pradhan of second-year physics.
Varsity authorities led by vice-chancellor B.C. Tripathy today met the injured student, Saumya Ranjan Panda, at the SCB Medical College and Hospital. Panda’s family members have demanded immediate arrest of the students responsible for the attack.
Despite the ongoing agitation, classes at Ravenshaw University resumed today after two days. However, there was thin attendance as most students staying in various hostels refrained from attending classes fearing unrest on the campus in the wake of suspension of the students.
Meanwhile, the authorities are planning to serve a notice to the four students to vacate the dharna area and East Hostel within 24 hours to restore normalcy on the campus.