Kochi, Dec 18 (UNI) Dismissing the bail plea of five students in a ragging case, the Kerala High Court today said the state government should take effective steps to eliminate the ''pernicious practice from our campuses.'' Dismissing the bail application of Berin T Varghese and four other students of the Government Veterinary College, Mannuthi, accused in the attempted abetment of suicide by a junior student, Justice R Basant observed, ''the bane of ragging has been polluting the atmosphere in the professional college campuses of this country for a long period of time. The young students cannot be permitted to indulge in such vice.'' ''I have no doubt that prevention of ragging must now be held too serious a business to be left to the managements and principals of the colleges alone. Civil society has to intervene effectively to prevent such incidents in our campuses.'' The court also opined that strong legislative action supported by effective executive enforcement and judicial interpretation could certainly help the polity to prevent this vice.
The state had to undertake a minimum five-year ''war'' on ragging, not isolated skirmishes or battles to exterminate and eliminate this vice from the college campuses, the judge added.
Principals and managements must be compelled by law to cooperate with the law enthusiastically under threat of effective sanction, he said.
The history of war against ragging in the campus revealed that there had been no determined and positive action. The offence under the Kerala Prevention of Ragging Act was non-cognisable and bailable. The system could not expect the impossible from the police force. ''If you expect them to fight against ragging on behalf of the sublime polity of this country, they have to be equipped with necessary legal weapons,'' he added.