Family shocked over death of student in ragging (Lead)

March 10th, 2009 - 5:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Gurgaon/New Delhi, March 10 (IANS) A 19-year-old student who died after being ragged by drunken seniors was cremated in the Indian capital Tuesday with distraught family members saying they had done a wrong by not taking action when he complained of harassment in his college.
“We should have called him back when he complained to us about ragging,” said a relative of Aman Kachru, a brilliant student who died after being beaten by his seniors at a college in Himachal Pradesh.

The attackers, identified by Deputy Superintendent of Police O.P. Jamwal as Ajay Verma, Naveen Verma, Abhinav Verma and Mukul Sharma, have been arrested and booked for the crime.

Himachal Health Minister Rajiv Bindal said a magisterial probe had been ordered.

“We will take strict action against the senior students who indulged in ragging and anyone else who showed laxity in curbing ragging. If a murder case has to registered against the seniors, it will be done on the basis of the postmortem report,” Bindal told IANS.

Aman died Sunday after being ragged by four final year students of the Rajendra Prasad Medical College at Tanda, a small town 20 km from Kangra. Police said he died of head and other wounds.

“My biggest mistake is that I could not foresee the incident happening,” said Aman’s grieving father Ravindra Kachru, who flew into India Tuesday from Tanzania where he is a professor.

“He had complained to us but we never imagined it would be so serious. If I had known, I would have dealt with that gang myself,” Kachru told reporters at the family home in Gurgaon, bordering the national capital.

The young student’s body was brought to the Gurgaon Sector 23 residence at around 2 a.m. Tuesday and taken to New Delhi’s Lodhi Road crematorium.

Aman’s uncle Rohit Dhar added: “He had complained to us earlier about ragging in the college. We should have called him back. If only we had, he would have been alive today.”

Aman’s mother is a teacher in Gurgaon and his elder sister studies in Texas.

Added Dhar, who lives next door to the Kachrus: “Aman and 12 other students had complained to the college authorities about the ragging by seniors but the college never took any action.”

He alleged that there was also delay in providing medical attention to Aman. “No doctor was available at the hospital he was taken to. Due to the delay in treatment, he lost his life.”

The principal of the medical college, S. Sankhyan, said the four senior students had been suspended from the college for two years. Hostel warden Pradeep Bansal and hostel manager Deepak Verma have been suspended.

At least 13 other first semester students were ragged by the seniors. This is in violation of Supreme Court guidelines making ragging a crime.

Aman Kachru, whose family originally hails from Jammu and Kashmir but is now settled in Gurgaon, was a brilliant student, family members said.

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