Hirunika moves motion to end all forms of ragging


by Saman Indrajith

The country had enough laws to prevent ragging in universities, but many students still suffered at the hands of their seniors, Colombo District MP Hirunika Premachandra told Parliament yesterday.

Hemachandra moving a motion against ragging in universities said: Ragging in all forms in all universities should come to an end. Some students committed suicide because they could not bear up the pressure of ragging. There were laws in the country but those laws did not prevail in universities. According to the laws ragging was illegal, but ragging continued. Many students drop out from their courses of studies because of ragging. In developed countries, students who enroll in universities know the date of their leaving the university. But unfortunately, Lankan students had no idea when they would leave universities because of university closures, student struggles and politics in universities. It was a sorry state of situation.

The motion moved by MP Premachandra titled ‘Implementation of existing laws in order to stop ragging that is presently taking place in all universities,’ sought the resolving by Parliament "in order to completely prevent the ragging new students have to experience within or outside universities, law should be implemented in terms of Prohibition of Ragging and Other Forms of Violence in Educational Institutions Act, No. 20 of 1998 against those who engage in ragging." 

UNP National List MP Prof. Ashu Marasinghe said that he too had undergone unpleasant experiences of ragging when he entered the university. There should be a mechanism to rehabilitate the raggers.

Skills Development and Vocational Training Deputy Minister Karu Paranavithana said that there should not be two laws in the country. Criminal law was applicable within the university premises too. Many unpleasant incidents were reported from universities. It was so unfortunate that some forces still talk in favour of ragging and try to justify such inhuman acts.

Kalutara District JVP MP Dr Nalinda Jayatissa said that his party would not approve ragging. Anyone suffering or being suppressed cannot be condoned. In some faculties of certain universities ragging took place and developed into violent incidents. The initiative taken by MP Premachandra was very important. There should be an approach to change violent students’ ideologies.

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