Video about Ragging
There is no record to prove such an act has prevailed in the ancient Sri Lankan educational institutions such as Mahavihara or Abhayagiri Vihara. It was in the post World War II era, a concept called ragging came into existence. Ragging is not an indigenous phenomenon, but a direct result of the British colonialism in Sri Lanka.[a] Soldiers returning from war re-entered the college and brought with them the technique of ragging learned in military camp. These techniques were used to make individual fail as an individual and succeed as a team. But eventually when lesser number of military persons entered the universities, ragging lost in primary objectives and became a violent and hazardous exercise.
Ragging continues to happen in most of Sri Lankan universities, schools and several private institutions.
Inception of ragging can be pleasant at first, hence the name Mal Samaya. During this week or so, all newcomers are ordered to memorize the name and hometown of their peers. The objective of this exercise is said to be increasing the friendship among batch mates (locally termed as batch fit).
Dress Code Ragging
The freshmen are asked to dress in a specific dress code for a particular period of time. For the dress code prescribed is generally weird, e.g. dressing totally in white or black with the hair oiled and combed in a particular style, dressing shirts that do not contain stripes, dressing long skirts for girls. The dress code ragging may make the freshmen feel awkward and uncomfortable as it often brings them unnecessary attention from everybody else.
The freshmen may be asked to do silly things like climbing a tree, kissing a tree, proposing to someone from the opposite sex, holding a hand of someone from opposite sex and walking etc.
Verbal torture involves indulging in loose talks. The freshmen may be asked to sing the lyrics of any vulgar song or use abusive language in the presence of a large number of peers. During this time, seniors assign an abusive and demeaning nickname, known as card to the juniors and they have to be called by that name throughout their entire university life. In some universities, this nickname is changed to a less vulgar name after the ragging period. These aliases are used primarily as a means of preventing the university authorities identifying the students who are involved in ragging and other unlawful activities. The form of verbal ragging differs from one institution to another. In some universities, students have to memorize poems made up of filth and recite them in front of others.
This is the severest form of ragging that could take place in a university. Some seniors are mainly interested in details such as the anatomical description of one’s body parts, his or her sexual interests etc. In many cases, the freshmen have been asked to strip before the seniors. However, sexual abuse of female students remains rare. Outstation students who stay in hostels are most vulnerable to ragging. They may be asked to do odd acts such as having showers several times per day, and having showers around midnight with cold water. Some extreme cases like inserting candles in vaginae (as in the case of Rupa Rathnaseeli), putting testicles in a drawer and having it closed, pushing straightened out coat-hangers into ears, striking the penis over a long period of time (termed bonchi kadeema) are also reported. This period of time is termed Bheeshana Samaya in university jargon.