Hunger strike: 30 SC girl students hospitalised
KARIMNAGAR, SEPT. 7. In all, 30 Scheduled Caste girl students of the Andhra Pradesh Social Welfare residential school/ college, Mallapur of Dharmaram mandal, were hospitalised on Friday as they fainted following a hunger strike in protest against `rotten food' being served in the hostel. All the 533 inmates of the residential hostel have gone on fast in protest against the Principal for allegedly diverting the hostel edibles and providing `stale food.' They had brought this to the notice of the authorities concerned but in vain. Lecturers and others appealed to the girls to call off their stir. After about 9.30 a.m., students started fainting one after the other due to scorching sun. Immediately, faculty members shifted them to the Karimnagar Government Hospital. The remaining students, however, did not give up their strike. The Collector, Ms. Sumita Dawra, has directed the Jagtial Sub- Collector, Mr. Sandeep Kumar Sultania, to rush to the hostel and inquire into the issue. After holding discussions with students at the hostel, he ensured that the strike was called off. He assured the students of quality food and a probe into the allegations of misappropriation of funds and food material. At the Government Hospital, the Superintendent, Dr. Sanjeeva Chary, alerted his medical staff and took care of the students, who were suffering from dehydration, by administering them with saline bottles and providing them with bread and milk. They alleged that the Principal used to abuse them with filthy language in the name of caste. They said out of 24 faculty members, only 10 were teaching them and the syllabus was not completed on time. The NSUI State president, Mr. P. Prabhakar, the AISF State president, Mr. Sriramulu, and others rushed to the hospital and asked the district administration to register a case against the principal under the SC\ ST Atrocities Prevention Act for allegedly abusing the girls in the name of caste. The Collector, Ms. Sumita Dawra, visited the hospital and enquired about the health of the students, and urged them not to resort to hunger strike and to complain to her if there was any problem in the hostel.