July 26, 2021 11:25:09 pm
The Gujarat Medical Education and Research Society (GMERS)-run Gotri medical college in Vadodara has sought the help of the city police in investigating the involvement of former students of the medical faculty in an incident of alleged ragging of 60 second-year MBBS students on July 24.
Three students were admitted to the hospital after complaining of discomfort and trauma following the incident and several other students have been affected psychologically, prompting the college to defer the internal exams for the second-year students to be held this week, Dean Dr Varsha Godbole confirmed.
On Monday, Police Inspector Rajesh Kanamiya of Gorwa police station in Vadodara attended the meeting of the anti-ragging committee of the medical college to offer advice to the committee. Speaking to this newspaper, Godbole said that the anti-ragging committee met over the weekend and decided to seek police help in countering the menace of alleged former students turning up on campus at odd hours and harassing students.
Godbole said, “We have identified five third-year students, in addition to two junior residents, who were involved in the ragging of 60 second-year MBBS students at around 4 am on Saturday. The students have also said that a few former students had come on campus to join the ragging, in which the second-year batch of 60 was made to do 100 sit-ups causing minor muscle injuries and soreness and trauma as well. Three students, who felt uneasy after the incident, were admitted to the hospital for treatment.
The incident allegedly occurred over a trivial issue of procuring milk packets for seniors, Godbole said. “Last week, some third-year students had asked a second-year student to fetch milk pouches for them. The student forgot and as a result, the third-year students felt snubbed. They had then called a meeting of the two batches to discuss the issue but they said that the second-year students walked out due to some abusive language being used. Then, the third-year students called their seniors (alumni) to sort out the issue.”
“When we called in the accused students, they told the committee that the second year students did not show respect towards their seniors. We believe it is because there has been no time for the two batches to bond this year due to the lockdown. The hostel was closed and the second-year students have only returned recently. We have been counselling the students to open up and share their difficulties.”
According to Godbole, the incident took place near an open ground near the hostel, when the five third-year students summoned the batch of 60 to do 100 sit-ups to “teach them to respect the seniors”. The Dean, however, said that the former students were yet to be identified. “We have heard that some former students frequently come to the campus and create a menace but such a thing has happened for the first time. A security guard had intervened that night too, but both the batches told him to stay out of it as it was just a meeting. The security guard or any other student did not inform the warden about the incident,” Godbole said.
On Monday, the anti-ragging committee met with the parents of the affected students and the accused students. “The second-year students have not filed an official complaint yet but now they have given in writing the incident that took place. Today we met with the parents of students. The anti-ragging committee has, unanimously, decided to suspend the third-year students from the hostel, who were involved in the ragging. We have asked the police to help with this menace of former students coming in the wee hours. The head of the security agency also attended the meeting and put forth his side of the story,” Godbole said.
PI Kanamiya of Gorwa police station said, “The medical college called me to attend the meeting and I have noted down the concerns expressed by the anti-ragging committee in the case of ragging that took place on campus on Saturday. We will begin a deep investigation into the involvement of outsiders in the incident once we receive a written complaint from the college.”
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