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Ishita Ranganath|Mar 23, 2023
NEW DELHI: Several students were injured following a commotion during the Pronite event organised as part of Rendezvous’23 cultural festival at IIT Delhi. Despite having tickets for the live concert, the entry gates to the event were closed for students which led to stampede and alleged “manhandling” by the Delhi Police.
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The Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi)’s Board of Recreational and Creative Activities (BRCA), which is the largest student’s bodies, organised the cultural festival which was slated from March 9 to 12. Pronites are held in the evening of the festival. As per the schedule, singer Sonu Nigam and Punjabi singer Guru Randhawa were to perform on March 11 and March 12 respectively. However, the IIT Delhi administration cancelled both the live concerts.
On March 11 evening, when students gathered to attend the Punjabi Singer’s Live concert they found that the entry gates were closed nearly half hour before the said time. As per the instructions, students were required to bring the entry passes and student’s ID card and the entry time was from 5 PM to 7.30 PM.
However, the gates were closed at 7.10 PM. “Students who were waiting in long queues outside the gate were told by the coordinators that the football ground capacity is full,” a student who wrote about the incident told the IIT Delhi students group.
“The situation got worse when the students discovered that most of the students who were standing in the queues were from the institute.” Pronites are events which attract both students from the institute and outsiders, the student said.
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Male security guards deployed in the girls’ entry gate “inappropriately pushed, manhandled” the girls who tried to enter. The male bouncers and police were also allegedly passing comments on the girls students. More than a thousand girl students and an equal number of male students were also waiting outside.
The situation got worse after students started pushing the gate. A student was allegedly beaten by a IIT Delhi security guard for forcefully trying to enter the concert. Some students were admitted in the hospital due to severe injury because of the stampede. “The face and hand of a BTech 4th year female student has been damaged badly and no one can estimate how much time it will take to recover fully,” the student said.
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The student in the note asked several questions to the administration. “How did the capacity get exhausted if the passes for the concert were limited? Why were male guards deployed in female entry gates? If the students of the campus are not allowed, who are these events held for?”
“The management team of the institute failed… Lack of coordination and poor decision led to the outrage among students.”
After photos and videos of the incident started circulating on social media, the IIT Delhi students tweeted: “Why does the institute always wait for a student to die or get severe injury and then take action? Why are there always reactive measures taken and no proactiveness for the safety and security of its own students?”
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