A battlefield called Patna University


The recent and unabated violence in Patna University (PU) campus has seriously thrown this question whether PU campus is a place of learning or a place of proving one's superiority ? Not only the college administration, but also the University officials have badly failed in checking the growing menace of disturbing student in the campus. If one goes by the newspaper reports during the past several month, one would find that most of the time, the news reflects the deteriorating condition of the Patna University in the 'extra-curricular activities'. There is no denying fact that PU is still the best university in the State, which attracts the brightest student in its vicinity. However, academic performance forms only a part of overall aspect of the university environment. The presence of peaceful and disciplined surrounding is an essential requirement of any university. Sadly, PU seems to be failing in the second criteria badly.

A few days back, a NIT Patna student who had gone to B N College for admission for his sister, was badly beaten by the hostel students. His only mistake was that he got into argument with a student over some issue, and that student happened to belonging to the hostel. Not only he was pulled from the admission room, but he was thrashed badly by scores of hostel student in a show of power. Not satisfied with this, the students went on to jam the road, which got cleared only after police intervention. What this all indicate ? Is college administration so weak that it could not provide security to outsider who has visited campus for some admission purpose ? Not many days back, another such incident was reported from the Patna College campus. A brother was beaten badly because he happened to oppose some hostel student who used to pass frivolous comment on his sister. The boy was thrashed in broad day light in the middle of the campus with scores of people watching but none daring to stop the power show of the hostel student. Surprisingly, the college has a police picket where there is round the clock presence of police personnel, and the incident happened barely 50-feet from it. Does these incident show that hostel students have became so much emboldened so as to challenge the college administration and the police alike, and both not doing enough to curtail their impunity ? The hurling of country made bombs or air firing by students in the campus during inter-hostel rivalry no longer astonishes public at large. The recovery of arms and ammunition from hostel rooms, especially from Saidpur group of hostel are taken with ease and normalcy. The classes disruption, road jams, window breaking, inter group fights etc. have became recurring events. The menace of ragging in the campus is so widespread that several anti-ragging squads are formed each year by the University administration, College officials and student union, yet the result remains the same. Sometimes, campus hostels also gets involved in pitch battle with each other due to encroachment over ragging territory. This happens despite the strict guideline from the highest court and the HRD ministry. This clearly indicates the 'Chalta hai' attitude of the officials who 'pardons' the ragging takers. This tendency only emboldens the ragging takers, and they do with impunity. These all indicates the deteriorating condition the PU campus.

Patna University has been a reputed university in the eastern India since its inception way back in the middle of the 19th century. However, recent unabated violence put blemishes on its record. It takes decades for an university to earn reputation, however it takes only a decade or so to lose it. It seems that PU is following the wrong way. PU needs to take strict action against these 'minor incidents', as officials label them, to establish a peaceful and disciplined environment in the campus. These incidents may be minor but they have larger bearing in the longer run of campus life.

[July 2013]