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‘Ragging’ charge in Chirang school

Some of the students injured in the incident at Kamarguri on Friday night. Telegraph picture

Kokrajhar, Aug. 2: Altogether 24 students of Classes VIII and IX were allegedly beaten up last evening by their Class X seniors in what is being described as a “ragging incident” at Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, Kamarguri, in Chirang district.

According to sources, a group of five to six Class X students beat up 24 junior students with sticks. The injured students include five studying in Class VIII and 19 in Class IX.

The injured students have alleged they were beaten with bamboo and even iron rods used to tie mosquito nets. The students received severe injuries in their bodies. The injured students were admitted to Betagaon civil hospital in Bijni subdivision for treatment.

The guardians alleged that the school authority even tried hush up the matter and did not inform them nor did they take appropriate action against the incident. It was only after the students were admitted to the hospital that the matter came to light.

The parent and guardians of the students have demanded strong punishment to the students involved in the incident. The junior students alleged the Class X students were involved in ragging incidents on the school campus on earlier occasions too.

The school authorities refused to comment on the matter and said a meeting has been called to discuss the incident. This is not the first time that such incident has occurred at a Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Chirang district and in Assam.

On July 29 last year, 16 students of Classes VII and VIII were severely beaten up by students of Class XII at the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, Ransaidram, in Chirang district. The accused students were later rusticated.

In September 29, 2013, a teacher beat up 46 girl students of the same school for “not obeying her”. Of the 46 students, 15 had to be hospitalised, while another was left with a broken tooth.

On August 26 the same year, 19 Class IX students of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya at Monacharra in Hailakandi district had fled the school, hoping to meet the deputy commissioner to complain about the frequent “ragging”. They were assured that the school authorities would listen to their pleas. The school authorities, however, suspended the Class XI and XII students who were involved in the alleged “ragging”, along with the 19 students who had fled the school.

Various student unions and organisations, including Absu, AASU, AKRSU, Bengali Students Federation, condemned the incident and urged school authorities and the district administration to take stern action against the senior students.