12 June 2008, Thursday
The Raghavan Committee appointed by the Supreme Court for monitoring the measures to prevent ragging in higher educational institutions met at New Delhi to take stock of the situation and review the progress made by different regulatory bodies and other stakeholders who have been directed by the Court to implement the recommendations of this Committee’s report on anti-ragging measures.
A separate cell has been constituted in the commission to look after the matters relating to ragging in Universities and colleges, informed the representatives from University Grants Commission (UGC). UGC has set up a visiting committee for 11th plan development assistance and this committee shall be responsible to sensitise the institution about the prevention of ragging.
Release of grants under various schemes of the UGC should be linked with the compliance by institutions with the directions of the Supreme Court of India in this regard, felt the monitoring committee. The committee also said that incentives by way of higher grants should be provided by the Commission to the higher educational institutions, which ensure that ragging does not take place in their campuses in any form.. The statutory regulatory bodies should direct educational institutions to incorporate in admission notices appropriate messages regarding `zero tolerance’ towards `ragging’, it added.
The Supreme Court has upheld the recommendation that ragging lowered the standards of higher education, and the committee reiterated that each regulatory body responsible for maintaining standards of higher education was required to ensure that the directions of the Apex Court were strictly complied with. Wherever any incident of ragging is reported and institutions do not take adequate steps for redressing the grievance, regulatory bodies must conduct inquiries through fact finding committees, the Committee observed.
The fresh academic session 2008-2009 is to commence shortly and the Committee urged the Central government to take immediate steps to take up intensive multi-media publicity campaign in order to reinforce anti-ragging measures as directed by the Supreme Court.
Representatives from the UGC, All India Councilfor Technical Education, Medical Council of India, Dental Council of India, Nursing Council of India attended the meeting. DR RK Raghavan asked the regulatory bodies to prepare specific and strict regulations to enforce anti-ragging measures in the higher educational institutions. Expressing disappointment over the degree of helplessness shown by the regulatory bodies in eliciting information from educational institutions, he further asked them to take all steps to ensure that educational institutions under the purview become zero tolerance campuses in respect of ragging.
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