Lucknow: Chargesheet filed against three girl students for ‘ragging’ Dalit junior

The chargesheet was filed on Monday containing all the charges levelled in the FIR except IPC section 325. (Express Photo by Vishal Srivastav)

THE KANPUR police have filed a chargesheet against three girl students at Chandrashekhar Azad University of Agriculture and Technology for “ragging and making casteist remarks” at a Dalit woman, their junior, on the university campus in September this year.

The accused are BSc second-year students, while the Dalit girl is a first-year student at the varsity, police said.

Even as the FIR also alleged that the accused students had pushed the Dalit student from the second floor of her hostel building on September 3, leading her to fall and thus causing serious injuries, the Investigating Officer (IO) claimed that the Dalit student told police that she “did not know” how she fell down. On the basis of her statement, the charges under IPC section 325 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt) were removed during investigation, said the IO.

Based on a complaint of the victim’s brother, an FIR was registered on September 5 against three unidentified girl students under IPC sections 325 (voluntarily causing grievous injury) and 506 (criminal intimidation) apart from the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and the UP Prohibition of Ragging in Educational Institutions Act.

The names of the three students were included in the FIR after the victim gained consciousness at the Hallet hospital in Kanpur, where she remained admitted for a long time, and named the girls. She has now fully recovered and discharged from the hospital, police said.

The chargesheet was filed on Monday containing all the charges levelled in the FIR except IPC section 325.

“It was not a case of suicide [bid] but of the woman falling down. In her statement, she had said she did not know how she fell. However, she named her three seniors and alleged that they ragged her. We do not have strong evidence against the accused as the victim and her family alleged ragging, while others in the hostel denied the claims. But, as the woman herself has mentioned ragging in her statement, we filed a chargesheet based on that,” said Circle Officer (CO) of Nawabganj, Ajeet Singh, who is also the IO.

The officer said the woman alleged that the seniors used to make her do sit-ups along with similar “punishments”. According to the FIR, she got admission in the college this year in July and some senior girls in her hostel pushed her from the hostel’s second floor.

“On September 3, my sister called me around 8 pm complaining that the senior girl students were torturing her and subjecting her to mental harassment in the name of ragging even after the freshers’ party. She also told me that she was humiliated for being from a Scheduled Caste. I convinced my sister that everything is going to be alright, but around an hour later I was told that she was seriously injured after she fell down from the second floor of her hostel building,” the woman’s brother told the police. In the FIR, the brother stated, “When asked, she told me that on September 3 night some senior students tortured her, took her to the second floor of the hostel building and pushed her from there on the pretext of ragging. This was based on her belonging to a scheduled caste...”

Dean of Student Welfare (DSW) at the university, Harish Pratap Singh, said no action was taken against the students named in the FIR as no complaint was given to the university administration. He claimed that the university administration formed a committee to probe the alleged incident. The committee members tried to speak to the woman on several occasions but her family members did not allow them to. No evidence were found against the three students, he claimed.