BANGALORE: One of the questions that was raised in the recent ragging cases has been the lack of an institutional mechanism to deal with ragging. Simply put, why did the college authorities not prevent the incident? What are states and the colleges supposed to do to tackle this menace? A part of the answer lies in the non-implementation of the Raghavan Committee report, the committee constituted by the Supreme Court to answer the questions raised above. However, the report is yet to be implemented by universities and colleges in any substantial manner.
The committee was constituted by the Supreme Court in 2006 to be headed by former CBI Director Dr R K Raghavan, while hearing a case on ragging.
The committee then submitted a report in late 2006, outlining a series of steps that can be taken at various levels such as school, colleges, district administration, universities, state authorities and central authorities.
The committee has asked central regulatory bodies such as University Grants Commission(UGC), All India Council for Technical Education(AICTE), Medical Council of India(MCI), Dental Council of India(DCI) to consider ragging situation in institutions before accreditation of the institution. Further the committee has also recommended setting up ragging cells at colleges, aside from cells at the central and state level. The committee has also called for strong laws against ragging with responsibility to prove not-guilty to that of the perpetrator.
In this respect, Karnataka is lagging behind states such as Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh who have passed ragging-specific legislation.
While the Karnataka Education Act does have a provision for dealing with ragging, it is rarely invoked.
The Raghavan committee also recommends staggered entry of freshers and seniors in colleges. It suggests that freshers be inducted to college two weeks before the senior students begin to attend class.
The University Grants Commission(UGC) has already announced that a committee has been formed to look into the implementation of the Raghavan committee report. In its meeting with universities for the XI fiveyear plan, the UGC has also conducted sensitisation measures.