Every public university is an autonomous institution with the right to administer all academic and disciplinary matters for ensuring quality education. One of their prime duties is to maintain an education-friendly environment starting from the classroom to student dormitories. The brutal killing of Abrar Fahad of the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, the country's most prestigious educational institution, raises a big question as to whether the right environment had been ensured there to nurture talented ones and help them to bloom properly.
Getting a chance to study at BUET is not easy; only extra-ordinary meritorious students are enrolled there. It is a legitimate question as to why some of the meritorious students got involved in the gruesome murder of one of their mates? One common goal tied them together: upholding the supremacy of their party and crushing opponents in the name of ragging. All accomplished the goal together, in Abrar case, by violating every norm of the discipline of living in the student dormitory, the Sher-e-Bangla dormitory, and humanity, under the very nose of those involved in maintaining a sound, peaceful and congenial environment for students.The dorm administration is no less notorious than the killers. The incident crossed all limits of civility and this did not happen in one day but over a period of time as such incidents were ignored giving these kind of elements the carte blanche and impunity. A section of teachers who are also members of the administrative body continue to show unprecedented loyalty to ruling quarters mainly to flout their duties and grab undue benefits from the authorities concerned.
We now know that though it is the prime duty of provosts and house tutors to ensure the security of all the students residing in a dormitory, most of them do not properly carry out their duties. They live elsewhere. They do not even attend their offices let alone visiting the floors of their respective halls. As a result, common students often face torture and abuse. These anomalies are long-standing practices not only in the BUET but also in other public universities.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has declared zero-tolerance against any unjust activities anywhere. This bold step will hopefully help to bring about a basic and much-needed change in the administration of all public universities.