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The Madras High Court today adjourned to June 23 a PIL seeking a direction to set up a committee to suggest ways to promote peace in the IIT-M campus here following the recent assault on a research scholar over a beef fest held at the institute. The division bench of justices M Sathyanarayanan and M Sundar adjourned the PIL by Ditty Mathew, a research scholar in IIT, Madras, to June 23. The matter relates to the alleged attack on Sooraj, a research scholar by some students of the institute on May 30, over his participation in the beef fest held by a group of students on May 28. The counsel representing IIT-M submitted that immediately after the incident, a committee was constituted and responses through e-mails were sought from everyone. The petitioner submitted that following a Facebook post on May 28 inviting friends to a canteen complex in IIT-M for a discussion on the recent notification of the Centre, banning sale and purchase of cattle for slaughter from animal markets, around 50 people gathered there. The students had indulged in discussions and ate cooked beef and bread brought from outside the institute, she said. On May 30, when Sooraj and his friend Anoop, another research scholar were eating at the canteen, a group of eight students headed by Manish Kumar Singh came there and brutally attacked Sooraj, inflicting grievous injuries on him over his participation in the fest, she alleged. Police conducted inquiry and recorded his statement at the hospital, but thereafter, except registration of an FIR, no action was taken against Manish and others, the petitioner claimed. She further alleged that owing to political pressure, a false complaint has been registered against Sooraj. The grievance redressal committee formed by the Institute after the incident had condemned the behaviour of Manish, but no stringent action was taken against him, she said. If these type of incidents were not nipped in the bud, it would lead to severe security problems for students staying the campus, she added. Hence, she prayed for a direction to IIT-M to take disciplinary action against Manish, pending inquiry into his conduct, more particularly in the May 30 incident.
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