New Delhi, Feb 23 (IANS) Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday accused central ministers of driving Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula, of the University of Hyderabad, to commit suicide.
“Rohith kept saying that if you suspend me, my career will be ruined. He pleaded with the university not to suspend him. But our system compelled a talented student like him commit suicide,” said Kejriwal, addressing a protest meet at the Jantar Mantar here.
Hundreds of students and faculty members of various universities took out a march from Ambedkar Bhawan to Jantar Mantar to condemn the “institutional killing” of 26-year-old Vemula. Kejriwal too joined them to express solidarity with the student’s family.
“The central ministers drove Rohith to suicide. But even today, the two ministers have not been questioned. The ministers who drove Rohith Vemula to commit suicide are roaming freely and no action taken against them. The culprits should be immediately arrested and investigation initiated against them,” he demanded.
Kejriwal also warned Prime Minister Narendra Modi about tangling with students. “Modiji, don’t mess with students. If they get together, they’ll shake your chair in such a way that you won’t forget ever.”
Vemula committed suicide on January 17, triggering widespread protests demanding action against central ministers Smriti Irani, Bandaru Dattatreya and others, blaming them for the suicide.
Five Dalit students, including Vemula, were suspended in September following a clash with a leader of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP). Dattatreya, who is the MP from Secundrabad, had written to Irani, the human resource development minister, seeking action against the students, following which they were suspended.