Rajahmundry: Students demand lesser punishment

Rajahmundry: Tension mounted on AP NIT campus when 15 students with the support of their parents and other collegemates staged a protest against severe punishment given to them in a ragging case. The protestors, who gathered at Peda Tadepalli village in West Godavari on Tuesday, sought leniency.

On Monday, the AP NIT authorities put on display the punishment meted out to 15 students involved in ragging first-year B.Tech student Mukul Kumar on February 2. The suspended students informed their parents and friends and mobilised their support and staged a dharna on the campus demanding lesser punishment.

The AP NIT authorities said that as per the recommendation of higher authorities, the main accused student Guna Sai Prakash was expelled fr-om the college, while five students were suspended from attending the college for four semesters and nine were expelled from the hostel though they could attend classes. The protestors said AP NIT was giving ‘very harsh punishment’ and expressed concern over the academic future of the punished. Those facing disciplinary action reportedly threatened to commit mass suicide if the management failed to reduce the intensity of the punishment and did not allow them to attend classes. Police rushed to the campus.

NIT resident coordinator Prof Srinivasa Rao said, “The 15 students who are facing disciplinary action and their parents approached us claiming that the punishment given to them is harsh and wanted mercy by reducing its gravity. Accordingly, we have informed the higher authorities and based on their decision, we will act further on the issue.” Meanwhile, complainant Mukul Kumar reportedly wanted to withdraw the case. However, police said it was not possible as the case had been registered.

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