Delhi University may be all charged up with a never-before army of anti-ragging rules for the new academic session that begins today, but newbies don't want to miss out on the good-humoured fun.
"Considering the arrangements made by the authorities this year, I am confident that ragging would not take place, but I do hope we can have some harmless fun with the seniors," says Ashbi Kuriakose, 18, who has taken up English Hons at Maharaja Agrasen College.
"Given the anti-ragging measures, I'm sure unhealthy ragging will not take place. So, I hope it's pure fun. In fact, I'm already practising the songs I'll sing!" says Vanya Mahindroo, 17, a new student at Hansraj College. Raveena Sharma, who has opted for B Com Hons at Dyal Singh College, says, "Typical ragging is a thing of the past. So, we really hope the tough rules don't kill the informal interactions."
* Cops deployed on campus and in areas such as Vishvidyalaya Metro Station
* Anti-ragging warning announcements in Metro trains and DTC buses
* Special anti-ragging squads and Nodal Officers appointed in each college
* Toll-free anti-ragging helplines: 1800-180-5522, 155222.
Seniors: don't make us feel like criminals
While the fuchchas are brimming with excitement, the mood in the senior wing is sombre. "With so many new strict rules, I am scared to even go for an informal interaction with students. Who knows, they might get offended and report it," says Radhika Abrol, a second year student of Bhaskaracharya and Rajguru College of Applied Sciences.
She's not the only one who has decided to stay clear of the customary first day sessions. "One can only see police officers on the campus right now. They look at us with such suspicion, as though we are criminals already," says Shubham Bhatia, a third year student of Ramjas College.
The University authorities say they are not against ice-breaking, but at the same time say the steps they took were inevitable. "An alarming number of ragging cases were reported last year, especially from the south campus. So we had to come up with better measures," says Gulshan Sawhney, Deputy Dean of Student's Welfare.