A 19-year-old freshman student at a university died during a brutal hazing ritual by six senior male students in a rice field outside the university campus in this northeastern province.
The details were posted on the Facebook page “ANTI SOTUS” along with a photo of the victim, Padyos Chonpakdi, 19, a first-year student at Rajamangala University of Technology Isan.
The poster said senior students took Padyos with them to a rice field where they said they were going to play football, near Ban Nong Rawiang in tambon Nong Rawiang, Muang district.
The gathering in the rice field turned out to be a hazing ritual. Padyos was forced to drink liquor and then beaten by the senior students until he became unconscious.
When efforts to revive him, including CPR, were unsuccessful he was taken to Fort Suranaree Hospital, about 20 kilometres away. Padyos died on the way to the hospital.
The poster did not mention the date or the time.
Padyos’ father, Ekachai Chonpakdi, 55, returned to Nakhon Ratchasima from Nakhon Si Thammarat on Sunday after learning of his son’s death.
At the Fort Suranaree Hospital, he met the six senior students, who prostrated themselves at his feet in a show of apology and admitted their guilt.
In a telephone interview, Mr Ekachai said he would go back to the hospital on Tuesday to take his son’s body from there to Bangkok for autopsy.
An initial examination at Fort Suranaree Hospital found Padyos had Covid-19, but the infection was mild.
Mr Ekachai said he had been contacted by university administrators, who said because the hazing occurred outside the university it was out of their supervision. However, they said, the university would offer full compensation to show responsibility.
Administrators told him they would investigate the six senior students and their parents. The students would be dismissed for serious misconduct, under the university regulations. Legal action would be taken by police.
Padyos’ father said he would also take legal action against the six senior students and any others who might have been involved.
A police investigator said on Tuesday that the hazing was on Sunday, March 13, about 11pm. About 60 first- and second-year students were present, called to attend by the six senior students who organised it.