In the name of healthy interaction

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Zainab Zubair
Member since August 19, 2017
  • 3 Posts
  • Age 20



A medical degree is regarded as one of the most prestigious feats that can be achieved by a person. Admission into a medical school guarantees you a medical degree in the end, well to about 90% of the people enrolled.

Talking about Pakistan, admission into a government medical school is a feat that millions dream of, thousands strive for, and mere hundreds achieve it. When I first saw my name in the selection list for one of the most prestigious medical universities in Pakistan, my immediate feeling was joy, which slowly but surely transformed into fear. This fear wasn’t because of the tough class schedule or the countless hours of studying that awaited me, it was of the so called ‘healthy interaction’ with my seniors.

Fast forward to the first day in the institution, it went by slowly. Every time the door of the lecture hall opened, my heart would race at the thought of the seniors coming to ‘fool’ us. At the end of the day, as I was walking out of the university, I encountered some people who asked me to do a few ‘tasks’. Refusing to do them, I was labeled as ‘arrogant’ on the very first day.

Lucky for me, my university was in my hometown so I did not have to face the dreaded ‘hostel ragging’.

That doesn’t mean I didn’t get to hear about it.

In hostels, girls and boys are asked to sing, dance, strip and perform other degrading tasks at the request of their seniors. Boys are faced with a more difficult situation where they are also asked to bring narcotics and other addictive drugs from unknown locations. Refusing to do any of these tasks would result in you getting beaten up, bullied throughout university life and being labeled with derogatory names.

In a nation where admission into a medical university instills more fear than joy in the hearts of youth, how can we be expected to work with enthusiasm? When we are constantly worried about hiding from our colleagues and seniors throughout our first year and then concerned about finding new juniors to ‘fool’ in our later years, when will we focus on research and discoveries?

Finally, the burning question is that who is to be blamed for this fear?

Our seniors? Or their seniors? Or the people who started this trend?

But the answer is not any of these questions, it is the system that is to be blamed. The reason that our seniors decided to ‘fool’ us is that they faced the same situation. The long-standing fire of revenge made them do it. The entire system of degradation and fooling in the name of healthy interaction is to be blamed. How is it healthy if it affects someone’s self-respect and sometimes also his perspective of university life? And what is the difference between a healthy interaction and a traumatic experience? Harmless ragging, meant to make first-year students less shy, ends up creating marks of trauma on their lives, which they take out on their respective juniors.

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