NEW DELHI: A decade after the brutal murder of 19-year-old Aman Kachroo, in a medical college in Himachal Pradesh led to nationwide outrage against ragging, little seems to have changed in medical colleges.
A report by Aman Movement, an NGO that has been working with regulatory bodies for higher education to curb ragging, shows that there has been a rise of over 80 per cent in ragging incidents in medical colleges in various states in 2017 and 2018, compared to 2016.
The total number of ragging incidents reported from medical colleges in 2017 and 2018 were 171 and 163 respectively, compared to 2016 when this number was 86 — marking a rise of 85 per cent in 2017 and 77 per cent in 2018.
In 2014 and 2015, the total complaints of reported ragging cases in medical colleges were 74 and 69 respectively.
There are about 460 medical colleges in India — nearly 270 of which are government run and the situation is worse in government medical colleges in UP, Bihar, Rajasthan, West Bengal and Odisha.
In 2009, after Aman’s death, the University Grants Commission had put a ban on all forms of ragging and had started a help line to allow students to register complaints.
Rajendra Kachroo, Aman’s father who runs the helpline for UGC, said that while the menace of ragging has been under control in other institutes, the situation remains scary in medical colleges. “There are various kinds of physical and emotional trauma students are subjected to in medical college hostels and the medical education regulator has never taken the issue seriously,” he said.
A 2nd year MBBS student in a medical college in Delhi said that the number in the report could be low as most cases are either not reported or college managements discourage students from placing it on record.