UGC move to check ragging

March 20, 2009: The Hindu

Admission form will have an undertaking to be signed by the students, guardians

‘Institutions will be required to organise joint sensitisation programmes for freshers, seniors’

NEW DELHI: Before getting enrolled at educational institutions students may soon have to give an undertaking that they will not indulge in any act of ragging and will not hurt anyone physically or psychologically.

In view of the recent incidents of ragging in the country, the University Grants Commission has prepared draft regulations to root out the menace.

“We have convened a meeting of 17 different councils monitoring higher education next month. These draft regulations will be discussed and debated at that meeting,¶ said UGC Chairman Sukhadeo Thorat here on Thursday.

Suggesting measures to prevent ragging at the institution level, the regulations stipulate that the application form for admission will have a printed undertaking to be filled up by the candidates stating that they are aware of the law regarding prohibition of ragging and the related punishments.

The application form will also have an undertaking to be signed by the parent/guardian of the applicant whereby he/she would agree to abide by the punishment meted out to his/her ward if found guilty of ragging.

Students seeking admission to the hostel will have to submit another undertaking for accommodation.

According to these draft regulations, the institutions will be required to organise joint sensitisation programmes for freshers and seniors. The UGC also recommends that the institutions arrange for regular psychological counselling and orientation for students during the first three months of the new academic year.

At the end of every academic year, the head of the institute will send a letter to the parents/guardians of the candidates completing their first year, requesting them to impress upon their wards to desist from indulging in ragging when they come back for the next session. As per the regulations, freshers who do not report the incidents of ragging either as victims or witnesses will also be punished suitably. The UGC will also set up an anti-ragging cell to provide support for collection of information and monitoring and to coordinate with different committees for effective implementation of anti-ragging measures. If an institution fails to curb ragging, the UGC/ the statutory body/ regulatory body concerned may stop financial assistance to them or impose other penalties. The UGC may also consider providing special annual financial grants-in-aid to institutions that report an unblemished record in terms of ragging.

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