Concerned over rising incidents of ragging in educational institutions in the country, President Pratibha Patil on Tuesday called upon authorities to take special efforts to prevent students from indulging in such acts. 'It is unfortunate that there were several instances where the practice of ragging has escalated to the level of torture amounting to a crime. Such irresponsible behaviour would cause serious apprehensions in the minds of new entrants and their parents,' says an official release citing Patil. Patil urged students, especially senior students in institutes of higher learning to be more responsible in their dealings with juniors. She said, 'Universities and colleges are centers of learning and for developing mutual respect, friendship and understanding. Their sanctity cannot be vitiated year after year at the start of an academic session by those who indulge in mindless ragging.'
Patil also asked the state governments, university and college authorities to be vigilant and strict towards offenders and to take special efforts to prevent students resorting to such acts. 'The state governments may also consider appropriate legislation to tackle this menace in the college and university premises in order to provide credible deterrence,' said Patil. Three gruesome incidents of ragging have been reported in the country recently. A 20-year-old management student was left partially blinded after he was allegedly ragged by his seniors in Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu. In another incident, a medical student died in Himachal Pradesh after being ragged while a girl student attempted suicide in Andhra Pradesh after ragging by seniors.