Ensure justice instead of playing politics: Gehlot on Dalit scholar’s suicide

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New Delhi, Jan. 19 (ANI): Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thawar Chand Gehlot on Tuesday said that there should be no politics over the suicide of a Dalit student from the University of Hyderabad and asserted that all efforts must be made towards ensuring that justice is delivered to the victim’s family.

“We are working right now in order to gather as much information as we can regarding the case and we will do everything we can to ensure that justice is delivered. When incidents like these happen where a Dalit has been victimised, our department immediately gets into action,” Gehlot told ANI.

Assuring that law will take its own course in the matter, he said that it was wrong to play any kind of politics over such a sensitive case and added that all the political parties must strive to ensure justice is delivered to the victim and his family.

“I am completely against politics being played in such a case. Instead, we should try to find out why such incidents happen and try to ensure it does not happen again. But the government needs to step in and take action,” Gehlot said.

Minister of State for Labour Bandaru Dattatreya has been charged with abetting the suicide of the Dalit scholar. He has also been booked under the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes Prevention of Atrocities Act following allegations that he orchestrated the suspension of Rohith Vermula and four other Dalit students from the University hostel.

The police has also registered a case for abetment of suicide against University of Hyderabad Vice Chancellor Appa Rao and two ABVP leaders Sushil Kumar and Vishnu.

The Centre has formed a two-member probe committee as the incident triggered protests in Hyderabad and the national capital yesterday.

Union Human Resource and Development (HRD) Minister Smriti Irani had yesterday refused any intervention by the government in the suicide of the Dalit scholar as several groups demonstrated outside her ministry to vent their ire over the incident.

Rohith, a second-year research scholar from the Science, Technology and Society Studies Department, and others were suspended from the hostel last year following allegations that they attacked Sushil Kumar after a screening of the controversial documentary ‘Muzaffarnagar Baaqi Hai’.

Earlier this month, the five students were thrown out of the hostel amid allegations they were denied access to campus facilities, except their classrooms and respective workshops, on recommendation by an executive committee of the university.

The 28-year-old hailing from Andhra Pradesh’s Guntur district was found hanging at a friend’s hostel room around 7: 30 p.m. on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi is set to meet the protesting students in the University of Hyderabad today. (ANI)

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