Hyderabad, Jan. 19 (ANI): Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday launched a scathing attack on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Government at the Centre over the suicide of a Dalit scholar in Hyderabad University and accused Minister of State for Labour and Employment Bandaru Dattatreya and varsity’s Vice Chancellor of abetting the suicide of the scholar.
Rahul, who interacted with the protesting students of the University of Hyderabad, said that the varsity had used to its power to ‘crush’ the students instead of allowing them to express themselves.
“The idea of a university is that young people from the country can come here and express whatever is in their hearts… He must feel that this is an institution where I can say whatever i want without punishment without pain. What has happened is that some youngsters have felt that they wanted to express certain ideas that they have,” he told students here.
He said that Rohith Vemula, who hanged himself to death on Sunday, was put through so much pain that he ended his life.
“The institution, instead of operating fairly, instead of letting them speak, has used its power to crush them. The vice-chancellor and the minister in Delhi have not acted fairly. And the result is that, a student who had come here to learn, was put in so much pain that he had no other option but to end his life. The conditions that led to his suicide were created by the vice-chancellor were created by the VC, the minister and the institution,” he added.
Rahul also expressed his solidarity with the students and met Vemula’s kin at the University
Meanwhile, the students of the University continued their protest in the varsity premises demanding action against Vice-Chancellor Appa Rao, Minister of State for Labour and Dattatreya and ABVP leader Susheel Kumar.
Vemula, along with four other Dalit students, were allegedly expelled from hostel following a tussle with students affiliated with the student wing of the BJP, Akhil Bharatiya Vidhyarthi Parishad (ABVP).
Vemula, who belonged to Guntur district of Amravati, was doing his PhD in science technology and society studies for the past two years, before the scholar allegedly got involved in a tiff between two student groups in August last year.
The students demanded the revoking of the suspension of the five Dalit research scholars.
They also demanded Dattatreya’s apology for interfering in University matters and branding the students of University of Hyderabad as casteists, anti-nationals and extremists. (ANI)