Judged by this yardstick, actions and behaviour of senior college and university students are a far cry from the normal, decent and the civilized. It’s all the more reprehensible because even girls are subjected to indecency and vulgarity.
There was a time when ragging was unheard of in our educational institutions. It was imported from the West by new fangled laws. Judicial imitation is passe but injudicious imitation leads to chaos and disaster. This is what has happened.
The meaning of ragging is “organized horseplay in defiance of authority.” Horseplay it no longer is. It is organized in defiance of authority. Hence, it calls for condemnation and ban.
Anything done in defiance of authority in any way deserves to be curtained, curbed and abolished. It calls for strict action and punishment. Any leniency in this regard amounts to giving it a further fillip.
The raggers may put forth unsustainable argument that it is meant to bring the fresher’s into the mainstream of campus life, that it helps in rounding up the angularities of the fresher’s who are awkward, gangling and uninitiated in the ways of college and university life. They also hold forth that this results in understanding and mutual liking, which blooms into friendships.
On all these counts, ragging cannot hold water. There are clear cut reasons. Any person with an iota of sound logic will agree that there are many other civilized ways of bringing the fresher’s into the mainstream of campus life.
Why not hold a variety show programme after the academic session is well in, asking seniors and juniors of participate in it. Let them display their talents and skills. This will bring them together, hone their skills, and make them friendly without leaving wounds on their psyche.
This will be far cry from a bright young one giving up college or even attempting suicide. Even otherwise, it is one thing for a girl to mimic her favorite film heroine but another to make her enact a sex scene by seniors!
It is wrong to say that rough horseplay rounds up angularities of the young. If anything, it accentuates them. Can a youngster subjected to sexiest actions be called a rounded-up personality? Can a girl made to do lesbian act remain unaffected by the experience?
Personality disorders get acuter when youngsters are subjected to unwholesome and unhealthy practices. Above all such actions breed hostility, and a strong desire to seek revenge.
The ragged youngster nurses the humiliation in mind and next year, will have it out on a newcomer. The practice thus perpetuates itself.
The vicious cycle moves on and gets worse with every passing year. Stripping of fresher’s, once unheard of, has become common. Slapping, fights resulting from it, are too passe now. Group violence too takes place. Ragging is celebration of violence.
Viewed on a bigger perspective, it mirrors the violence the society is brewing within its unseen bowels. This, in turn, is a reflection of frustration simmering in the minds of the young.
The rich becoming richer, unemployment, political and administrative corruption, eruption of scams of the Himalayan proportions, naturally affect the sensitive minds of the young. They seem to be thinking: if politicians and government officials can get away with anything, why can’t we get away with some lewd fun?
The seniors who inspire and plan organized horseplay at the campus also take their cue from teachers. They know it well that the faculty indulges in symbolic “ragging” in many forms. Painting others black, stabbing colleagues in the chest, writing anonymous letters, slandering, and even physical blows are part of the practitioners of the “noble profession.”
Media, for whom the guiding principle that ‘ bad news is good news’, give publicity to the deeds and actions of the delinquents. They, turn zeros into heroes!