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NUJS hires student psychotherapist to help with law school pressures

NUJS: Now with counsellor
NUJS: Now with counsellor
Exclusive: Three weeks after what was presumed to be the suicide of NUJS Kolkata final year student Wasim Iqbal, a psychotherapist is now set to begin serving as counsellor at the law school after notification on Tuesday.

Barnali Ghosh, a “student psychotherapist”, would sit in the university doctor’s room every Thursday afternoon from 2 to 4 pm from today, according to the notice.

NUJS registrar Dr Surajit C Mukhopadhyay told Legally India that Ghosh was officially appointed as counsellor on 7 August, but couldn’t join until tomorrow because she was also associated with various hospitals and other prominent Indian universities, although not with any law schools.

“We have spread the good word around, through the president and vice president of the student body, asked them to make it go around in the student body. We hope that they will reach her and talk to her about the pressures they have. We fully intend to take her advice on things once we get to know from a professional point of view what needs to be done,” said Mukhopadhyay.

Mukhopadhyay had told Legally India on the day after Iqbal’s death that the university had appointed Ghosh barely two weeks before the incident. Several NUJS students told Legally India at the time that they were not aware of the existence of a counsellor on campus.

Iqbal’s death from his fall from the NUJS boys hostel’s roof on 13 August was suspected to be a case of suicide triggered in part by exam pressures, but the NUJS administration implicitly denied this a week after his death in a press release.

The administration had stated that Iqbal had the “calibre to cope with regular rigour of academic and extra-curricular” activities, and that police investigations of the case had only led to the conclusion of “unnatural death”.

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