Rashmi Ranjan, a fourth-year PhD student from the School of Physics, Hyderabad Central University succumbed on November 25, at Citizens Specialty Hospital, due to multi-organ failure, which was caused by Dengue. His death has triggered protests in the varsity, with students questioning the university on how the varsity’s Health Centre could refer to Himagiri Hospitals – a hospital which was ‘blacklisted’ after it allegedly charged a student exorbitantly for a minor ailment.
Rashmi Ranjan Suna, a native of Banjipadar village under Karlamunda block of Kalahandi district was placed on ventilator support at Citizens Speciality Hospital at Nallagandla in Hyderabad for the last two days and the medical negligence and indifference shown by the HCU administration has killed him.
Reportedly on November 18, fearing he is infected by dengue virus after feeling uneasy for quite long, Rashmi had visited another private hospital in Hyderabad to get a check-up. Though the test reports were negative, the symptoms prevailed. To get a second opinion, Rashmi visited the Citizens Speciality Hospital four days later and was diagnosed with dengue fever at a severe stage. Later, jaundice and multiple organ failure grasped him. Rashmi of Banjipadar village under Karlamunda block of Kalahandi district was the first science graduate from the village. His death shocked his friends and well-wishers at the varsity who had tried their best to bring him back from the jaws of death.
Students lead protest against the apathy and indifference shown by the administration towards saving the life of a marginalized student.
“Institutions has multiple ways of murdering students. Whether through its “disciplinary measures” or through its apathy towards the physical and mental well being of the marginalized. It was such an apathy in Ghorakhpur by the Yogi government that killed kids, what has happened in this university is no different. health care is a basic right of a citizen, but this society has been denying the same for years. We are saddened and enraged by the mere disregard and indifference shown by university health center and Himagiri hospital in the case of Rashmi Ranjan Suna. We stand with his family and friends in this time of grief.” ASA wrote in a facebook post.
Students put forward demands such as to ensure compensation of 25 lakhs to Rashmi’s family and filing a lawsuit against medical negligence shown by Himagiri hospital and raised questions about favoritism shown towards Himagiri even though it had a bad reputation. and that why didn’t the doctors refer Rashmi to citizen’s hospital as requested by his friends. They demanded the formation of an inquiry committee consisting of third-party medical experts, student representatives, and faculty representatives to inquire into the issues that led to the demise of Rashmi and to suggest further actions.
Following the protest by students, the admin refused to accept the demands of the Students’ fraternity.
Rashmi was the only son of Sunil Suna and Hansamani Suna, who was a first-generation marginalized student hailing from Western Odisha. After defying all odds, he started his journey at the UoH in 2012 as an MSc student of Physics. Presently he was in the 4th year of the Ph.D. programme when the incompetent HCU medical center and Himagiri hospital failed to save a precious life.
Known as a very meritorious and workaholic scholar, Rashmi has co-authored two papers, “Amplified measurement of weak optical activity using a spin-phase-gradient beam” in the Journal of Optics Letters and “Spin-orbit beams for optical chirality measurement” in the Journal of Applied Physics Letters, respectively.
Rashmi had already been selected for an International Conference, “SPIE Photonics West 2019” to be held in San Francisco, USA. His father Sunil, despite being a farmer, had provided good education to Rashmi and his sister, who is presently pursuing her Certificate in Teaching (CT) course in Nabarangpur. His death is a huge loss to his family, community, village, and academics as well. He would have been a great inspiration for many other kids in his native place.