[Reader-list] PRESS STATEMENT: The Mohan Karthik Suicide

SPACE space4change at gmail.com
Sat Dec 25 18:32:16 IST 2004

 Society for People's Action, Change and Enforcement
 Stop Ragging Campaign

 For immediate release and circulation

The Stop Ragging Campaign of SPACE (Society for People's Action,
Change and Enforcement) condemns the ragging suicide of Mohan Karthik
(19) a first year student of Electronics and Communication
Engineering at SKR Engineering College, Chennai, on Sunday, 19
December 2004. Karthik was reportedly made to bathe in his own urine
by two third year students, KV Bhargav Kumar and Venu Madhava Reddy.

News reports say that the Managing Director of the institute has been
arrested and the Principal is absconding. Under the Tamil Nadu
Prohibition of Ragging Act, 1997, the institute authorities are
liable for prosecution should they fail to curb ragging. In this case
the authorities even ignored a written complaint, reportedly, from
Karthik's parents.

It is clearly the lack of implementation of the law that has resulted
in this suicide, not the first one in Tamil Nadu or India. The SPACE
Stop Ragging Campaign believes the Government of India, the UGC, the
AICTE, state governments and police authorities have not been doing
enough to curb ragging, and show concern only when a suicide takes

We demand that the Indian Penal Code be amended to make ragging a
criminal offence. Funding and affiliating agencies should conduct
routine inspections to find out the status of ragging in the campuses
that they recognize.

We also condemn the national media's silence over Karthik's suicide,
which comes over three years after a landmark Supreme Court judgement
on ragging. This is in contrast to the hype with which the media
treated the recent "MMS case" in Delhi.

Secretary, SPACE [Society for People's Action, Change and Enforcement]

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