Awaken Nepal

Two students arrested for ragging in India

Two college students have been arrested for alleged “ragging” involving a dalit woman from the Dalit community on May 9 in India.

Dalits, formerly known as untouchables, form the lowest rung of India’s caste hierarchy.

During the ragging, the seniors allegedly forced first-year nursing student, Aswathi, to drink disinfectant. She will need surgery to repair her damaged food pipe.

The college denied that the incident was the result of ragging and said Aswathi drank the liquid due to “family problems”.
Doctors have told her family that she will need surgery to repair the extensive damage to her food pipe.

Aswathi stated in a letter to her advocate that two students forced her to drink the toilet cleaning liquid after commenting about her “dark skin” and the fact that her father had left the family. A few others had reportedly held her down while the liquid was forced down her throat.

“They tortured me. They used to make fun of me, calling me names like ‘black girl’ and ‘charcoal’ and saying my appearance scared them. They came to my room that day, told me I was arrogant, and forced me to drink toilet cleaner,” the letter said.

Aswathi was admitted for three days in hospital. Doctors say they will wait for six weeks before operating on her damaged food pipe.

Ragging is a form of abuse often meted out to college newcomers.