Officals suspect a case of ‘ragging’
SRINAGAR: At least five students of Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST), Awantipora were hospitalized in a critical condition after some persons released some toxic gas in the classroom on Wednesday, officials said Thursday.
Varsity officials suspect a ragging angle in the incident. Nearly 50 students of MBA first semester were present in the class when the gas was released, said an official wishing anonymity.
The Vice Chancellor has ordered an inquiry to fix responsibility and decide on disciplinary action against those involved, while police has also taken cognisance of the matter.
“Five students were taken to the university dispensary after they complained of uneasiness. They were sent to a nearby Primary Health Center after medical check-up and doctors later referred them to SKIMS Soura for specialized treatment,” VC IUST, Dr Mushtaq Siddiqui told Kashmir Reader.
He said a committee has been formed to investigate the matter.
“The committee will investigate the incident and submit its report within 24 hours,” VC said.
“It looks a clear case of senior versus junior rivalry to us. We can’t rule-out the ragging angle to it. The investigation has already started and the picture will be clear after the inquiry is complete,” Dr Siddiqui said.
He said the University will file a police complaint only after recommendations by the inquiry committee.
On Wednesday, five students of MBA first semester were left unconscious while they were waiting for their post-lunch class around 2 pm inside their classroom.
“We were attacked by some toxic gas as soon as we entered our class after the lunch break. Most of us were unable to breathe because we felt choked after inhaling the gas,” said a female student admitted in SKIMS Soura.
According to her, she fainted immediately after inhaling the gas when she entered the room to grab her bag.
“Four of my classmates also fainted before me. We gained consciousness when we reached the hospital,” she said.
Another student, who has been affected by the gas, claimed that they faced intimidation attempts before also.
“Two days ago our classroom was locked from outside. Later the university security broke the lock after we shouted repeatedly,” she said.
According to the students, there is some rivalry involved in the incident while University authority are investigating the ragging angle to it.
Doctors at SKIMS told Kashmir Reader that they were affected with some toxic gas or spray.
“We have received them in a critical condition complaining breathlessness and drowsiness. Initial investigations have revealed they were under influence of some toxic gas. However, detailed investigations are yet to come from the Toxicology Lab,” Medical Superintendent, Dr Amin Tabish said.
He said the patients are out of danger now. “We have put them under observation for next 24 hours. Hopefully, they will be discharged on Friday,” MS said.