Ragging is a practice in educational institutions that involves existing students baiting or bullying new students. In the name of introduction or initiation, millions of students are brutally abused in many educational institutions. Historically originated, probably, to generate fellow-feeling or camaraderie and the ability to work in a team, it has metamorphosed into something else. It often takes a malignant form wherein the newcomers may be subjected to psychological or physical torture.
Ragging in India is a damaging form of interaction of the seniors in college or school with the juniors, newcomers or first years. It is similar to but not same as hazing in the United States, it is not an initiation. It involves insults (simple or suggestive sexual, sarcastic and even physical) running errands for seniors, and many other complex activities. Following Supreme Court orders a National Anti-Ragging Helpline was launched by the Indian Government. Students being ragged send emails at email@example.com to register their complaint, which can be registered without disclosing the name(s) of the victim(s).
Ragging constitutes one or more of any of the following acts:
a. any conduct by any student or students whether by words spoken or written or by an act which has the effect of teasing, treating or handling with rudeness a fresher or any other student;
b. indulging in rowdy or undisciplined activities by any student or students which causes or is likely to cause annoyance, hardship, physical or psychological harm or to raise fear or apprehension thereof in any fresher or any other student;
c. asking any student to do any act which such student will not in the ordinary course do and which has the effect of causing or generating a sense of shame, or torment or embarrassment so as to adversely affect the physique or psyche of such fresher or any other student;
d. any act by a senior student that prevents, disrupts or disturbs the regular academic activity of any other student or a fresher;
e. exploiting the services of a fresher or any other student for completing the academic tasks assigned to an individual or a group of students.
f. any act of financial extortion or forceful expenditure burden put on a fresher or any other student by students;
g. any act of physical abuse including all variants of it: sexual abuse, homosexual assaults, stripping, forcing obscene and lewd acts, gestures, causing bodily harm or any other danger to health or person;
h. any act or abuse by spoken words, emails, posts, public insults which would also include deriving perverted pleasure, vicarious or sadistic thrill from actively or passively participating in the discomfiture to fresher or any other student;
i. any act that affects the mental health and self-confidence of a fresher or any other student with or without an intent to derive a sadistic pleasure or showing off power, authority or superiority by a student over any fresher or any other student.
Possible Punishments :
(i) Cancellation of admission
(ii) Suspension from attending classes
(iii) Withholding/withdrawing scholarship/fellowship and other benefits
(iv) Debarring from appearing in any test/examination or other evaluation process
(v) Withholding results
(vi) Debarring from representing the institution in any regional, national or international meet, tournament, youth festival, etc.
(vii) Suspension/expulsion from the hostel
(viii) Rustication from the institution for period ranging from 1 to 4 semesters
(ix) Expulsion from the institution and consequent debarring from admission to any other institution.
(x) Collective punishment: when the persons committing or abetting the crime of ragging are not identified, the institution shall resort to collective punishment as a deterrent to ensure community pressure on the potential raggers.