7 CMC Vellore students suspended over ragging, sexual abuse allegations

[Hindustan Times] 7 CMC Vellore students suspended over ragging, sexual abuse allegations

The prestigious Christian Medical College in Tamil Nadu’s Vellore has suspended seven students for ragging their juniors, the college authorities said. Allegations against the seven students include physical and sexual abuse of juniors by parading them half-naked and making them mimic sexual acts.

The college on Wednesday said that a committee has been set up to investigate the allegations and that the students were suspended till the probe is complete.

A video of the incident surfaced on social media. A person claiming to be a first year student also posted a textual account on community platform Reddit of the ragging along with detailed allegations of physical and sexual abuse freshers were facing in the men’s hostel since March.

He described what’s seen in the video as a “walking race” during a “ragging ceremony” on October 9 where seniors instructed them to perform various acts. HT cannot independently authenticate the video or the details in the Reddit post.

The video, shared by a Twitter user said, “Video proof of severe ragging in Christian Medical College, Vellore.” Several other users tagged the office of the Prime Minister, chief minister and Union health minister.

The student wrote on Reddit that they were forced to lie down in mud and mimic sexual intercourse, among other acts. The video also shows two boys being made to hug each other by a fully clothed male student who also physically assaults them. Further, water from a hose is sprayed on the two boys.

CMC director, Dr Vikram Mathews, told reporters on the campus: “We received an anonymous letter and we are investigating.”

“Even though it is an anonymous letter, we have initiated an inquiry as per the rules of the land. When they submit the report, action will be taken. We don’t condone ragging in any form. We have zero tolerance to ragging. It’s alleged now. Till the enquiry is complete, they (the 7 students) have been suspended,” the director said.

The student also detailed the codes used by senior students to physically assault them — “buzzing” to hit their testicles, “tuning” to inflict pain on their chest.

Besides this, he added that they are suspended upside down from the top floor of the hostel, slapped and beaten. “We are required to strip naked at the request of seniors,” the user said, adding that they use cardboard to cover themselves.

Ragging is a penal offence prohibited by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the National Medical Council.



Divya Chandrababu

Divya Chandrababu is an award-winning political and human rights journalist based in Chennai, India. Divya is presently Assistant Editor of the Hindustan Times where she covers Tamil Nadu & Puducherry. She started her career as a broadcast journalist at NDTV-Hindu where she anchored and wrote prime time news bulletins. Later, she covered politics, development, mental health, child and disability rights for The Times of India. Divya has been a journalism fellow for several programs including the Asia Journalism Fellowship at Singapore and the KAS Media Asia- The Caravan for narrative journalism. Divya has a master's in politics and international studies from the University of Warwick, UK. As an independent journalist Divya has written for Indian and foreign publications on domestic and international affairs. ...view detail