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Devbrat Patnaik

By Devbrat Patnaik

Berhampur: While the Berhampur University continues to remain tense due to intermittent students’ unrest and violence, lack of prompt action by the police has cast serious doubts on the safety of the students within the campus and the efficiency of the varsity administration.

It is alleged that while the varsity authorities have filed complaints against some unruly students including the Student’s Union president for creating violence in the campus, the police are yet to take any action in this regard.

[caption id="attachment_204886" align="aligncenter" width="691"] Students carrying out protest march against sponsored unrest in campus..[/caption]

According to inside sources, the Registrar of the varsity had filed a complaint against the University president Ratan Sethi and some unruly students at the Gopalpur Police Station on March 25 for creating vandalism inside the campus premises and assaulting some security guards. They had also ransacked the chamber of the PG Council Chairman Jayaram Pradhan and abused him.

Asked about the incident, Pradhan said the CCTV footage of the incident has been given to the police who are yet to take any action.

[caption id="attachment_204883" align="alignright" width="284"] Girl students staging protest demanding arrest of Union President..[/caption]

"The University president had also entered into the ladies hostel a few days back and abused them with filthy language. Protesting this, the girl students had staged a dharna demanding immediate arrest of the Union president. However, the police, instead of arresting the accused, have been arresting persons not involved in the vandalism for the reasons best known to them," said a student requesting anonymity.


[caption id="attachment_204875" align="alignleft" width="184"] Damaged foundation stone plaque of Students' Union building..[/caption]

“Sethi and his supporters have ransacked university properties and also assaulted hostel students several times. The Athletic secretary had also filed an FIR against Sethi for attacking him in November last year. The police should take stern action against them.” said Union secretary Sashikant Nayak.

Despite indulging in such anti-social activities, Sethi and his supporters had staged a dharna on March 30 demanding withdrawal of the cases filed against them in a bid to escape from a possible arrest, he added.


Considering the sequence of events, questions are being raised on the hidden agenda of the Police and the University authorities. Why the police are yet to take any action? Why the University authorities are tight-lipped on such incidents? Will the Police investigate the matter seriously and take necessary action against the culprits? Is the administration indifferent to keep the goodwill that they have recently acquired? Will they be able to maintain the Grade-A status deemed on the University and provide a developmental environment for the students to grow?

While the situation in the campus remains tense due to the gross apathy of the police and the varsity authorities, the fact remains that the students are in a state of panic apprehending further violence.

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