Beatings, coercion part of BUET BCL’s vicious strategy

Amanur Rahman Roney and Rafsan Jani
Published : 00:00, Oct 10, 2019 | Updated : 00:00, Oct 10, 2019

CCTV footage shows Abrar Fahad being carried to the staircase.Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) workers used to apply harassment as a strategy at the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) although ragging was banned at the university premises and the university authority could not stop it.
This culture of harassment and torture, ordered by BCL seniors, has been going on for ages with the juniors usually the victims.
Students allege that BCL members used to carry out torture over trivial matters.
Under the ‘usual system,’ a junior used to be called to a room filled with seniors and asked to name the people seated.
If the junior (s) failed to mention the right names and the departments of the senior present, they used to be beaten up and there are occasions when cricket stumps were used to beat people.
Police escort Buet Chhatra League Joint Secretary Muttakim Fuad at Buet Campus in Dhaka on Monday, October 7, 2019 CollectedGeneral students were forced to take part in BCL programmes and, if they did not then they were beaten up openly.
In order to avoid harassment and beatings, most general students became members of BCL.
Students who want to study become the biggest victims and those who are religiously inclined are termed Jamaat-e-Islami sympathisers.
Recently, second year student of electrical engineering, Abrar Fahad who was a resident of Sher-e-Bangla Hall died after being beaten up allegedly by BCL’s BUET unit now expelled leaders.
Dr Zafar Iqbal Khan, who stepped down as the provost of Sher-e-Bangla Hall on Wednesday said to prevent ragging, phone numbers of university officials are provided at all halls.
Despite that, in reality the vicious culture exists in all its diabolical forms.
Three months ago, a student Abhijit Kar was tortured because he was sporting long hair. He was beaten severely and his hand was broken.
“I was threatened that if I ever told anyone of the broken hand, I would be killed,” said Avhijit.
Many others also faced such savage behaviour from time to time, the general students alleged.
Abrar, was found dead in the stairway of the Sher-e-Bangla dormitory in the early hours of Monday (Oct 7) and according to the autopsy report he was beaten to death.
His killing sparked nationwide outrage with students staging demonstrations, rallies, demanding justice for him.
On Oct 7, Abrar’s father, Barkatullah lodged a case at Chawkbazar police, accusing 19 persons and the case is being investigated by the south section of Dhaka city Detective Branch of police.
The law enforcers arrested 10 people the day Abrar’s father lodged the case and made three more arrest the next day.
On Oct 8, a court granted five day remand for each of the accused who were arrested the day before.