Here's How Ragging In College Can Leave Lifelong Scars On Innocent Young Minds

By Momina Mindeel | 27 Jan, 2017

This is part of our series, “Tales from The Dark Side”, about the deepest, darkest, harshest realities of Pakistani society that should serve as lessons.

“It was my first day at Kinnaird, F.Sc. Pre-engineering. Senior girls threw a jar of glitter in my hair. AN ENTIRE JAR and  drew a mustache with a permanent marker on my face. One of them dug her nails into my arms. Wo nishaan aj tak hain,” told Miss Hashmi, says that she has long grown out of that phase. However, the memory of that one unpleasant day is still etched vividly on her mind. Therefore, she wishes to conceal her true identity due to the scars she still feels for the incident that happened about five years ago.

“I couldn’t wash off the mustache but I was supposed to laugh it off, you know. Early teen age thi, you are already insecure about your appearance during those days and that fake mustache was just a cherry on top. I felt humiliated, didn’t have courage to step out of the house. My confidence was shattered and I just kept hiding that mustache with my hand.”


Miss Hashmi is unfortunately not the only one who has had to go through the horrors of ragging. While most of us associate it with fun or view it as an ice-breaking activity between the incoming freshmen and their seniors, we forget to take all such incidents into account.


The British tradition of ragging the incoming freshmen has made its way to Pakistan, just like all other colonial legacies we still harbor. 

A LUMS alumnus, Miss Amna suffers from anxiety and frequent panic attacks which she attributes to the ragging she suffered. She still remembers the day she was ‘unintentionally’ ragged on campus just because some of her seniors had a different way of having fun than hers.

Source: PhotoLUMS / Facebook

“It was during Daku Day at LUMS. Graduating seniors with their water guns were roaming all around the campus. One of them sprayed water all over my breasts and kept saying, ‘CP (class participation)  marti ho? Ab aur CP maaro‘.  I was wearing a rather sheer shirt and it wasn’t fun, AT ALL.  I had to seek refuge in the library until my shirt dried a bit. My friends told me not to make a huge deal out of it since he was a graduating senior. Even though, I told him not to do it, he obviously kept doing it. Everyone thought it was very funny and I was being a spoilsport. I already have anxiety issues and I thought I’d have a panic attack right there and then.

I was only a sophomore. My hands were shaking and they felt awfully clammy. It was terrible and embarrassing because everyone was having a huge laugh at my expense.”


These stories, by no means, negate the importance of ice-breaking sessions and fun activities among the incoming students and their seniors but the fact that approximately 50 million Pakistanis suffer from mental disorders, need to be taken into consideration. 

Source: Express Tribune

Maybe somebody is not being a spoilsport, maybe they just suffer from extreme form of social anxiety but are unable to communicate and suffer silently just because they do not want to be labeled as ‘cowards’ for the rest of their university lives.

Mr. Abbas, a NCA student, belongs to Islamabad. He arrived at the college hoping to become a Film Studies graduate. Abbas was brutally ragged and beaten on his first day. He suffered from emotional trauma for the rest of his first year. When he just couldn’t cope up with his depression, he left the college and went back to his hometown for a month.

Currently, Mr. Abbas is trying to finish his final thesis but due to lack of emotional and academic support, on account of his post ragging anti-social behavior, he has not been able to submit it on time. For his seniors, it was just another way of having fun and letting their frustration out. While for Mr. Abbas, it turned his life upside down. Just like that.

Source: DNA

The list of such stories just go on and most importantly, go unnoticed because spoilsports are frowned upon and labeled as ‘cry babies’. What we can do as students, teachers, friends and citizens of a free country is to inculcate this in our minds that everybody has their own struggles that they are going through.

By all means, have fun but do not let anyone lose their spark just because they could not conform to your idea of fun.

For more of the deepest, darkest realities that plague our society check out ‘Tales From The Dark Side‘.

Cover image via: sinha shubham / YouTube

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