KOTTAYAM: Students at a private college here have mounted a strong protest against the management of the institution after the alleged suicide death of a female second-year degree student on June 2, and accused them of trying to suppress the issue by temporarily closing down the institution.
Since morning, visuals aired on TV channels showed students and the management engaging in a war of words over the college being temporarily closed down and hostelers being asked to immediately vacate their rooms.
The students alleged that the management was trying to suppress their protest by closing down the institution and asking them to vacate hostels so that everyone goes home.
"They are calling up our parents and asking them to take us home," students told TV channels.
They also alleged that police used unnecessary force against the students at the behest of the management.
The students also told TV channels that inappropriate words were allegedly used by the management against them.
"All this is happening after we were told yesterday that there will be a discussion between the management, student representatives and a government representative regarding the various allegations and demands raised by us," a student said.
Visuals also showed a large number of students protesting and shouting slogans outside the main college building inside the campus, and a large police contingent in riot gear deployed to keep them in check.
On Monday, the Students' Federation of India (SFI), the student's wing of the ruling CPI(M) in Kerala, had marched to the private engineering college in Kanjirappally near here protesting against the alleged suicide of the student.
Shraddha Satheesh, a resident of Ernakulam, was found hanging inside her hostel room on June 2. Students have alleged that the college authorities took her to the hospital saying she fell unconscious.
Police had stopped the SFI march at the gate of the college but the students managed to overpower the security cordon and enter the premises where they staged a sit-in protest inside the office building.
"She (Shraddha) was upset after she came from the HoD's room. She said she wanted to die," a protesting girl student had told the media a day ago.
Students alleged that some of the teachers used to mentally harass Shraddha.
"HoD, one teacher who seized the phone, and two other teachers are responsible for this death. The teachers are harassing the students in the name of internals. We have complained to the management numerous times," the students alleged.
The college management had said they do not know why the student committed such an act. Police had said they have registered a case in the matter and a probe is on.