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Calcutta HC summons IIT director over student’s death

The court observed the unfortunate incident could have been avoided had IIT taken strict steps, and said the institute was trying to suppress facts

IIT Kharagpur student death, Calcutta High Court, IIT Kharagpur, West Bengal, Kolkata, Indian Express, current affairsThe court says his report ‘misleading and trying to suppress facts’

The Calcutta High Court on Thursday directed IIT-Kharagpur director V K Tiwari to appear before it on December 20 while expressing its dissatisfaction over the report he submitted last week on steps taken by the institute into the alleged incident of ragging on the campus which “led to the death of a third-year student” in October.

Hearing a petition filed by the family of third-year IIT-Kharagpur student Faizan Ahmed whose body was found in a hostel room of the institute on October 14, the single bench of Justice Rajasekhar Mantha had on November 10 directed Tiwari to file a report before it on the recent unnatural death of the student. The court also sought the name of students who were involved in the ‘ragging’. It also sought a separate report from the district police.

Hearing the matter on Thursday, the High Court reacted sharply to the report filed by the IIT-Kharagpur authorities and said whether they were “misleading the court by suppressing facts or trying to lecture the court”.

The court then ordered Tiwari to be present on December 20 and explain in person.

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Justice Mantha observed the unfortunate incident could have been avoided had IIT taken strict steps, and said the institute was trying to suppress facts.

Justice Mantha also sought to know why the institute had not named the students involved in the ragging, despite ragging being banned.

The counsel for Faizan’s parents, advocate Ranajeet Chatterjee, said, “The court was dissatisfied with the report, so it ordered the IIT director to appear before it on December 20, the next date of hearing. The report did not name any student, and thus, the bench expressed its displeasure and asked the director to be present on the next date of hearing.”

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The IIT director and registrar Tamal Nath were not available for comments.

\On October 14, the partially decomposed body of Faizan was found in his hostel room. Faizan hailed from Tinsukia district in Assam. His parents filed a case with the local police in Kharagpur, Paschim Medinipur district, demanding an investigation into the incident.

Following the incident, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma wrote to his West Bengal counterpart Mamata Banerjee, requesting her intervention for a thorough investigation into the death of the student.

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Following this, IIT-Kharagpur deputy director Amit Patra issued a statement wherein he tendered his apology and took responsibility for the “lapses that occurred in the handling of the situation”.

Later, dean (student affairs) at IIT-Kharagpur Dhrubajyoti Sen resigned from his post following protests by students.

On October 31, Faizan’s family moved to the Calcutta High Court, seeking a CID/SIT probe into the death.

First published on: 02-12-2022 at 23:57 IST
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