The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Ragging quartet’s bail plea rejected, again

Jalpaiguri, Aug. 28: The subdivisional judicial magistrate today rejected the bail petition of the four students of Jalpaiguri Government Engineering College arrested three weeks ago on charges of ragging a fresher.

This is the second time the magistrate denied bail to the accused in the past week. The court had earlier rejected a bail petition on August 22.

Magistrate Lakshmikanta Das said the petition was turned down as police had failed to furnish the case diary. As a result, he said, the court did not know whether the investigation was over.

Parasar Kishore Singh, Nigam Prasad Kundu, Mainak Chowdhury and Subhodeep Naha were arrested on August 6 after Sayandip Bandopadhyay lodged a complaint with the Kotwali police station accusing them of torturing him the previous night.

The fresher said the seniors had roughed him up before making him write a suicide note. He said the tormentors had also taken Rs 400 he had on him.

The court noted that the charges against the students, booked under Sections 307 and 379 of the IPC for attempted murder and theft, were serious and non-bailable. Investigation could be affected if the bail was granted.

Jalpaiguri superintendent of police Siddh Nath Gupta said the police would file a chargesheet against the accused in two to three days. The case diary, he said, was not submitted today as the investigation was not complete.

The parents, waiting at the courthouse for their sons’ release, broke down when the magistrate rejected the petition.

“We now have no alternative but to petition Calcutta High Court for bail. It’s simply inhuman,” said Subhodeep’s father Sudip Naha.

As word spread, the college students became agitated. Tamojit Chakroborty, spokesman for the students’ union, said they would go on an indefinite strike from tomorrow to demand the release of the students in jail since August 7. “The court rejected the bail petition for the second time. It’s not acceptable,” he said.

Chakroborty said the fresher should not have lodged the police complaint for what he called a misdemeanour. “Why did Sayandip do this to his collegemates' He has put them in jail and ruined their careers.”

Montu Chowdhury could not bring himself to believe that his son stole Rs 400 from the fresher. “It’s incredible. My son could never have done that,” he said.

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