Students Protest Outside College Where NCC Cadets Were Caned, Dy CM Assures State Assembly of Action
Following the circulation of a viral video depicting a distressing incident involving National Cadet Corps (NCC) cadets being subjected to harsh treatment by a senior student at a college in Thane, Maharashtra, a series of reactions and actions have unfolded. The video prompted student unions to stage protests outside the college, while within the state assembly, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar pledged a thorough investigation and appropriate measures.
The NCC responded to the video with a statement asserting that the behavior captured in the footage does not align with NCC values and is not representative of any formal NCC training or activity. Opposition leader Vijay Wadettiwar raised the matter in the assembly, leading Speaker Rahul Narvekar to call for governmental intervention. Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar reassured the assembly of stringent action against those responsible. Former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan called for the individual accountable to be prosecuted under anti-ragging legislation.
The NCC conveyed through a tweet that it does not condone such actions and is taking decisive action against the perpetrators. Student groups linked to Shiv Sena, including one led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, demonstrated outside the Joshi Bedekar College where the incident occurred. The college administration disclosed the suspension of the student seen inflicting harm on the NCC cadets during a physical training session in adverse weather. Another student is believed to have recorded the incident.
Nitin Landge, representing the Shinde group’s student wing, emphasized that the NCC cadets and their parents, who were affected by the incident, are facing pressure from the college management to abstain from reporting the senior student's misconduct. Landge urged the college to treat the situation seriously and file a formal complaint with the police. Meanwhile, members of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena's student wing submitted a memorandum to the college administration, demanding firm action against the senior student. Police personnel were deployed to maintain order and prevent protesters from entering the college premises.
The distressing video, which ignited public outcry, depicted eight cadets in a waterlogged area during rainfall, with their heads immersed in muddy soil instead of using their hands for support. The senior NCC cadet stood behind them, wielding a stick and administering blows to each cadet individually for failing to execute a challenging drill. The cadets were positioned in a push-up stance, with their heads and feet touching the ground while their hands were folded atop their backs. Whenever a cadet adjusted their posture, the senior student would strike them with the stick, repeating the process for others. The NCC instructor for this unit had recently been reassigned, leading senior cadets to assume leadership roles, culminating in this incident, as per a member of the university senate. The Joshi Bedekar College in Thane oversees the NCC unit along with two sister institutions, Bandodkar College and VPM Polytechnic. The implicated student, affiliated with Bandodkar College, has been suspended.