Archive for the ‘Human Rights’ Category


After a wait of 20 months finally the verdict of Aman Kachroo ragging case is out. And the 4 accused were convicted in the case. I must say that after a long wait of 20 months (though this a very short time in India) justice has been given to Aman’s parents.

Personally I feel that ragging should be banned from all colleges (this is what everyone feels) and may be a good and timely decision like this would help to eradicate ragging. But I guess, ragging is such that cannot be stopped easily, especially at such a mass level. Hopefully colleges will take strict action against these activities to stop them. Had the college taken a step when Aman had complained earlier, he probably would have been alive. Hopefully things will change in future, maybe this verdict will help things change.

Here is the article from The Hindu:

“Four medical students were today convicted of culpable homicide not amounting to murder by a fast track court for ragging to death their junior Aman Kachroo in Himachal Pradesh last year.

The quantum of sentence is expected to be pronounced later in the day. The offences for which the four students were held guilty are punishable with a maximum of a 10-year jail term.

Additional District and Sessions judge Purinder Vaidya held the students guilty under sections 304 II (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 452 (house-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint) and 34 (common intention) of IPC.

Nineteen-year-old Aman, a fresher of Rajendra Prasad Medical College and Hospital in Tanda, about 15 km from here in Kangra district, succumbed to injuries on March 8, 2009, after being allegedly ragged by final year students — Ajay Verma, Naveen Verma, Abhinav Verma and Mukul Sharma.

Reacting to the judgement, Aman’s father Rajendra Kachroo termed it as a victory and said this is a message in loud and clear terms to people who still indulge in ragging.

“I see this as a victory not only for me but for the people who are fighting for judicial reforms, criminal reforms and against ragging. I see it as a victory,” he said.

Mr Kachroo said he is not unduly bothered over what punishment the four students would get. “The essence is not punishment. It is the prevention of crime,” he added.

Mr Kachroo said if he had not fought against the bail granted to the four accused earlier this year, “I would not have seen this verdict today.”

Senior public prosecutor Jiwan Lal Sharma had contended that Aman was brutally beaten up under the garb of ragging by his four seniors and had succumbed to his injuries.

The court has recorded the statement of 38 witnesses, comprising doctors, police personnel and Aman’s father during the trial.

Mr Kachroo, appearing in court for the first time in the case on August 28 this year, had said his son spoke to him in detail about the incident of ragging that occurred in the college.

“Aman even told me that he had given in writing a complaint to college authorities regarding the (ragging) incident… Three to four hours after I got the phone call from Aman, somebody informed me on telephone from the college that he had passed away,” he had told the court.

The court had also re-examined two doctors — Harjeet Pal Singh of the ENT department, and DP Swami, assistant professor of forensic medicine department of the hospital — who are related to this case.

On July 17, the fast track court had granted bail to all four accused in the case, but later the Himachal Pradesh High Court cancelled the bail of the accused.”

I just hope that it gets finished here, it does not go to the higher courts and then to Supreme Court, as it does for most of the cases. If a decision has been taken let it be that way. As I have a feel that is the only way this verdict will bring a fear in the minds of students before they even think of ragging. Though this is not the first death in India that has happened because of ragging. Here is a list of all the deaths due to ragging:

2010

  • Nagedra AV, 25, was found dead in Chandigarh’s prestigious Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research on 19 April. The doctor had joined this post-graduate institution just two months ago. The police said he jumped to death from the hostel building, his father said he had been pushed. His father said a day ago he had said he was finding it difficult to continue there due to ragging.
  • Sinmoi Debroy, 21, was found hanging from the ceiling fan, dead, in his hostel room in Chennai on 4 April. It was a private hostel shared by students of various colleges. Most of the 42 SMSes in the Assamese engineering student’s mobile phone were threats and abuses from seniors, who also demanded money.
  • Ajub Ajith, 19, hanged himself to death from the ceiling fan in his house in Thiruvananathapuram on 31 March. He was a student of at the Sarabhai Institute of Science and Technology. He had told his mother that he was being ragged badly, but prevented her from complaining to the principal as, he said, that would make matters worse for him.
  • Satwinder Kumar, 28, ended his life on 3 March. He was a student of the Advanced Training Institute, Mumbai. In his suicide note he named seven seniors who had ragged him so much that he left for home for Kurukshetra rather than take mid-term exams. Before he could reach home, he committed suicide by throwing himself before a goods train in Rajasthan’s Jhalawar district.
  • Premlatha, 22, committed suicide by consuming sulphuric acid in the chemistry lab of the B S Abdur Rahman Crescent Engineering College on 5 February. Her brother singled out one senior, Yogesh, 22, a fourth year student, as the person ragging her the most.
  • Gaurav Sadanand Raut, 22, strangulated himself to death on 9 February in his hostel room in Nashik’s Maratha Vidya Prasarak Samaj Medical College. His father named his roommates Mandhar Monde and Anil Kavade as the culprits. Although the police detained four students, the local NCP MLA, Vasant Pawar, also the general secretary of the college body, denied that the student had been ragged.

2009

  • Anusha Hyderabad, November 5 (I don’t have more information on this. Any true information is welcome)
  • Ayan Adak, Kolkata 9 October 2009 (I don’t have more information on this. Any true information is welcome)
  • Aman Kachroo, 19, (on 7 March) a first year student of Dr Rajendra Prasad Medical College, Tanda, Kangra, HP, India, had repeatedly complained to his parents about the brutal ragging that took place on the Medical College campus — often by completely drunk third-year students. On Friday night and Saturday morning (March 6–7, 2009), the boy was beaten so badly that he died of brain haemorrhage.

2007

  • Durgesh Shukla, on 18 September he hanged himself from a ceiling fan in his hostel room in Pioneer College, Bhopal. He blamed seniors in his suicide note.
  • Manjot Singh, an MBBS student, on 8 August committed suicide by consuming a poisonous substance. He did so at his residence in Chandigarh, due to ragging in his hostel at the Government Medical College, Chandigarh.
  • Chetan Raj, 18, on 20 September, committed suicide in Mysore. His body was found hanging from the roof of his lodge room. He had already complained to his parents that he was being ragged in his college.

2006

  • S. P. Manoj, In November, committed suicide in his hostel room at the Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Technology, Hyderabad.
  • Azad Nair, 22,  a cadet at the Officer’s Training Academy(OTA) in Chennai. On 5 November, hanged himself from the fan of his room. Prior to his suicide he had told his brother Soumendu over telephone that he was being ragged and humiliated at the OTA and he had pleaded to his father Padmanabhan Nair to rescue him from the OTA.
  • Ashoke Chaudhury (I don’t have more information on this. Any true information is welcome)

2005

  • C Abraham, a first year engineering student, on 14 December hanged himself to death at his residence in Hyderabad. In his suicide note, he mentioned that he was not interested in studies. His parents suspected that his suicide to be a result of ragging.
  • Sridhar, 18, on 5 December, hanged himself to the ceiling fan in his hostel room in Chennai. In the English press, only one newspaper in Mumbai reported the incident.
  • Amit Sahai, on 11 October, committed suicide by jumping before an approaching train in Jalandhar. He was a student of NIT Jalandhar, Punjab. In his suicide note he blamed nine senior students of the National Institute of Technology, Jalandhar for having mercilessly ragged him.
  • Kamlesh Sarkar, 19, in July, committed suicide in a private hotel management institute in Kalyani, Nadia district, West Bengal. The police filed an unnatural death case and not one of ragging.

2004

  • Mohan Karthik Tripathy,19, on 19 December, hanged himself from a ceiling fan in his hostel room at the SKR Engineering College in Tambaram, Tamil Nadu. His written complaint about ragging to the college authorities had gone unheeded. He had been forced to bathe in his own urine.
  • Sushil Kumar Pandey, 18, in June, hanged himself to death after the humiliation of being paraded naked by his seniors at the Madan Mohan Malviya Engineering College, Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh.
  • Aakriti Dhar (I don’t have more information on this. Any true information is welcome)
  • Ehsan Saba (I don’t have more information on this. Any true information is welcome)

2002

  • Anup Kumar, 19, in September, committed suicide by hanging himself from a ceiling fan at his residence in Kanpur. In his suicide note, Anup said that he was going through mental agony due to the sexual harassment by second-year students of the Institute of Engineering and Technology, Lucknow, in the name of ragging.

1984

  • TK Chidambaram Raju Iyer, 22 years old, on the night of September 13th/14th, 1984, was killed by his seniors at the Institute of Management Technology, Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh. He was ragged by 4 senior students (Ashok Kapadia, Ajay Batra, Sujit Gopal, and Rajnish Jain), who remain scot-free to this day. Also, no action was taken against the Director of IMT, Ghaziabad or the warden of the hostel. Unless strict criminal proceedings are carried out against such people, the menace of ragging will continue to haunt India.

By this post I would also like to request everyone, to stop ragging, because if you are caught, you will be severely punished. The junior induction should only be limited to a healthy interaction, at no point of time should it cross the physical and mental torture limits.

Though I believe everyone will have different ideas and thoughts on this topic, so all thoughts are welcome for discussion. Even those that are in favor of ragging (hopefully there should not be any such though).


Aussie umpire tells of terror attack
correspondents in Lahore, Pakistan
Herald Sun, March 03, 2009

“It was terrible. The van driver died in front of us. I am lost for words,” stunned Australian cricket umpire Steve Davis said after gunmen turned an upmarket Pakistani square into a battleground.

Sri Lanka’s cricket side were on the team bus, all thoughts trained on the third day of their second Test against Pakistan in Lahore, when an explosion shattered the morning calm.

Masked attackers, creeping through trees, then opened fire in a brazen gun and grenade attack that left eight people dead and wounded six members of the squad.

For 15 minutes, the expensive business and commercial district of Liberty Square, with its designer boutiques and smart offices, was raked by bullets as Pakistani security forces and the attackers exchanged fire.

“There was a blast first, then we heard firing. A rocket launcher was also fired at the bus which narrowly missed,” a Sri Lankan cricketer told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Television umpire Nadeem Ghori and Davis were travelling with other Test umpires just behind the Sri Lankan team when the bullets suddenly rang out.

“Our bus driver Mohammad Zafar was hit in the stomach and died on the spot,” Ghori said.

“The firing continued for 15 minutes. It was shocking.”

Television footage showed a number of gunmen, wearing backpacks and some in sports trainers, creeping nimbly behind bushes, crouching to aim their weapons and then running onto the next target.

Blood stained the front seats of a vehicle used by Pakistan’s elite force, the van raked with gunfire with its wheels shot up, its plastic steering wheel cover damaged and radio system disabled by bullets, said an AFP reporter.

Crystals of broken glass littered the road.

Bullet holes tore through the windscreen of another vehicle and a white car was shown smashed headlong into the roundabout, with nervous security officers guarding the site.

An AFP correspondent found and handed over empty rifle magazines dropped by the gunmen in a side street after they fled.

Australian freelance cameraman Tony Bennett was at the Gaddafi stadium in Lahore when “we heard a bomb go off, rapid rounds of machine gun fire outside the ground, small arms fire.”

“Next thing we knew, the Sri Lankan team bus rolls up being sprayed by bullets,” he said.

“Players (were) getting carried into the dressing room.”

Gavin Scovell, director for Australia’s Ten Sports television channel, also witnessed the shooting.

“I could see a few wounds but they weren’t panicking, they were very calm,” he said of the players.

“With all respect to them, it must have been a terrifying experience for them.”

A security guard in the Big City Plaza said he heard a huge explosion before the shooting began.

“Soon after the blast, there was (the) noise of continuous firing. I thought perhaps some bomb had exploded in the Gaddafi Stadium,” he said.

“I was frightened. I had only a gun. After some time I saw a damaged police vehicle, an overturned traffic police motorcycle and a traffic warden dead on the road. Then my superiors ordered me to come inside,” he added.

Sri Lankan authorities said six players were wounded and recalled the team home after what was the first bloody attack on a visiting cricket team in this cricket-obsessed country.

Security officials said the gunmen managed to escape after the shooting on four main roads leading from the square.


Attack bore LeT signs: Experts

The attack on Lankan cricketers in Lahore bear the signs of a Lashkar-e-Tayiba-style attack, terror experts say.  Experts say it is typical of the LeT to carry out such attacks after security agencies cracked down on its leaders.  The attack, they say, goes on to prove that despite claims of dismantling its top leadership, the outfit is capable of striking at will.

Flashback 2002: source livemint

In 2002, a bomb exploded in Karachi while the New Zealand cricket team were touring, killing 13 people including 11 French navy experts. The tourists, based at the Pearl Continental Hotel, were preparing to depart for the National Stadium for the start of a test match when a car exploded outside the nearby Karachi Sheraton. New Zealand called off the tour within hours of the attack.

Acting Sri Lankan foreign minister Hussein Bhaila “also confirmed that two players, Tharanga Paranavitana and Thilan Thushara were hospitalised and the Sri Lankan High Commissioner is rushing to Lahore to take stock of the situation.Divulging the details, he said that Thilan Samaraweera, who was in great form, was hit in the thigh, while a bullet grazed the chest of another player that was treated in the hospital. Also, six others suffered from cut injuries and were treated in the Gaddafi Stadium itself.”   (www.zeenews.com)

Sri Lankan cricket team attacked in Pakistan
By RIZWAN ALI – Associated Press Writer
LAHORE, Pakistan

A dozen masked gunmen armed with rifles and rocket launchers attacked the Sri Lankan cricket team as it traveled to a match in Pakistan on Tuesday, wounding several players and killing five police officers, officials said.

The assailants ambushed the team’s convoy at a traffic circle close to the main sports stadium in the eastern city of Lahore ahead of a match against Pakistan’s national team, triggering a 15-minute gunbattle with police guarding the vehicles.

None of the attackers were killed or captured at the scene, said city police chief Haji Habibur Rehman said. Authorities did not speculate on the identities of the attackers or their motives.

TV footage showed gunmen with backpacks – apparently the attackers – firing at the convoy as they retreated from the scene, with several damaged vehicles and a lone, unexploded grenade lying on the ground.

A Sri Lankan foreign ministry official said two players – Thilan Samaraweera and Tharanga Paranavitana – were hospitalized. He said three more players were slightly injured and that the head coach, Australian Trevor Bayliss, also sustained minor injuries. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Squad member Kumar Sangakkara told Sri Lankan radio station Yes-FM that “all the players are completely out of danger.”

“Luckily there’s nothing serious and everyone is fine,” he said.

Police chief Haji Habibur Rehman said five policemen died in the attack by 12 masked gunmen.

Authorities cancelled the test match and the Lahore governor said the team was flying home.

The attack will surely mean the end of international cricket in Pakistan for months, if not years. Even before, most teams refused to tour the country because of security concerns. It will also have implications on the game’s future in South Asia, its most lucrative market.

“It is terrible incident and I am lost for words,” said Steve Davis, an Australian who was umpiring the match.

Nadeem Ghauri, a Pakistani umpire who witnessed the attack, said the umpires were behind a bus of Sri Lankan players when suddenly they heard gunshots.

“The firing started at about 8:40 and it continued for 15 minutes,” he said, adding “our driver was hit, and he was injured.”

A driver of one of the vehicles in the convoy told Pakistan’s private Express news channel that he saw a man firing a rocket toward their van and then some one hurled a grenade, but the weapons missed their vehicle.

Gunmen attack SL cricketers in Lahore
March 03, 2009 10:11 IST
Last Updated: March 03, 2009

Gunmen killed at least four people in an attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team’s bus on Tuesday as it drove to the Gadaffi stadium in Lahore, according to witnesses and cricket officials.

Sri Lankan media, quoting the sports minister, said four players received minor injuries in the attack — Kumar Sangakkara, Ajantha Mendis, Thilan Samaraweera and Tharanga Paranavithana.

Pakistan television channels said four people were killed.

A witness told Reuters he believed two police commandos were killed along with a regular policeman and a traffic warden. Shopkeeper Ahmed Ali said the two police commandos had been driving behind the team bus when they were hit.

“It was a very heavy firing and I heard at least two explosions at the time,” said a Reuters witness who had been on his way to cover the Test match between Pakistan and Sri Lanka .

Pakistan only invited the Sri Lanka team to tour after India’s team pulled out with security concerns following the militant attacks on the Indian city of Mumbai  in November.

According to PTI, the incident took place when the Sri Lankan team was attacked by around 10 armed gunmen near the Liberty Chowk which is close to the stadium.

“The firing took place from at least four sides and continued for some minutes,” one police official said.

One explosion was also heard at the stadium, PTI adds.

The attackers later escaped in separate groups.

The liaison officer of the Pakistan team said players of the host nation have been sent back to the hotel.

“The Sri Lankan players are presently safe at the Gaddafi stadium and they are getting treatment,” one PCB official told PTI.

Sources also claimed that the police had received a threat on Monday that the Sri Lankan team would be attacked so a different route was used to transport the team to the stadium.

“The firing took place from at least four sides and continued for some minutes,” one police official said.

“There were 12 masked gunmen,” Lahore police chief Habib-ur Rehman told reporters, adding that police battled against the assailants for about 25 minutes.

“They appeared to be well-trained terrorists. They came on rickshaws. They were armed with rockets, hand grenades, kalashnikovs,” he said.

Television channels aired footage of at least two of the gunmen, one of them wearing shalwar kameez and other jeans and a jacket. Both were armed with assault rifles and carrying backpacks.

Police cordoned off the area immediately after the attack and launched a search for the gunmen. The driver of the cricket team’s bus drove away from the spot immediately after the firing started.

“We are assessing the situation,” Pakistan Cricket Board chief Ejaz Butt said.

“Five policemen who were providing protection to the team sacrificed their lives,” he added.

Attack came despite change in Lankan team route
Sheela Bhatt, March 03, 2009

“It was a daring attack on Sri Lankan cricketers by around a dozen young gunmen, reminding one of the Mumbai terror attacks ,” says well known Pakistani editor Hamid Mir, speaking to rediff.com from Islamabad .

He said given the threat perception for the Sri Lankan cricket team, they had taken a different route on Tuesday and yet were attacked.

“From their hotel, Pearl Intercontinental in Lahore ,to the cricket stadium they usually go through the road along the canal. But today they took the route through Liberty market,” he said.

According to reports, the gunmen were carrying weapons in sacks and were dressed like college students.

From their appearance they looked like Ajmal Kasab, who was among 10 terrorists who attacked Mumbai on November 26, 2008.

Mir says around eight to 10 gunmen came from one side and four to five gunmen came from the other side to attack the cricketers. When the security commandos took up position to protect the cricketers they were hit by the bullets, killing four of them.

In view of the Mumbai attacks and because of the threat to security to its cricketers, India had refused to send its team to Pakistan but Sri Lanka agreed to replace them. The current attack is one more severe setback to the image of Pakistan as an unsafe place for foreigners.

Mir says, “We are not surprised. Similar attacks are being carried out every day in Swat valley. Today it has happened before the full glare of the media.” He said the timing of the attack is significant.

Interestingly, Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon had recently met his Sri Lankan counterpart, and communication channels between the two nations were just opening up.

Hamid Gul, former chief of Inter Services Intelligence, has quickly blamed the Indian external intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing for the attack.

Mir added, “It is difficult to say who attacked the Sri Lankan team,” and refused to comment on Gul’s allegation against India. He also pointed out that the Lashkar e Tayiba was not opposed to the Sri Lankans.


Terrorists are like animals: Supreme Court judge
http://in.news.yahoo.com/43/20090127/812/tnl-terrorists-are-like-animals-supreme.html
Tue, Jan 27
New Delhi, Jan 27 (IANS)

Equating terrorists with animals, a senior Supreme Court judge on Tuesday said people speaking for their rights are actually advocating ‘animal rights’.

Those who violate the rights of society and have no respect for human rights are not humans but animals. And people fighting for terrorists are actually supporting ‘animal rights’,’ said Justice Arijit Pasayat, addressing a conference organised by the Indian Law Institute.

Speaking on ‘Investigation and Prosecution of Offences Related to Terrorism’, Pasayat called for a united effort to fight terrorism.

Blaming society for the spurt in terrorist attacks, Pasayat, the third most senior judge of the apex court, said: ‘We are hypocrites and speak in different tones when it comes to terrorism.’

Advocating stringent anti-terror laws, the judge said: ‘It is important to have special laws to deal with terrorists and we need to give enough time to our investigators and prosecutors to prepare the case with strong evidence.’

Echoing Pasayat’s views, senior advocate Fali S. Nariman said terrorists could not be equated with those accused of petty offences.

Nariman advocated taking away the right of silence from terrorists and advised the government to re-consider the Malimath Committee’s recommendations that suggested amendment in one of the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code to combat terrorism.

‘If an alleged terrorist refuses to answer the court’s query, the presiding judge should be empowered to draw an adverse inference against him,’ said Nariman.

Solicitor General G.E. Vahanvati said since Pakistan was unwilling to assist India in combating terrorism, it was time to strengthen the criminal justice system.

‘If a lawyer does not want to fight for Kasab, we should not force him or her to do so. Let Kasab defend himself before the court, if he can speak another language other than terrorism,’ he said, referring to Mohammed Ajmal Amir alias Kasab, the lone terrorist captured during the Nov 26 Mumbai attack.