Hyderabad: In a fresh development in the dalit scholar Rohit Vemula's suicide case, University of Hyderabad Vice Chancellor Appa Rao Podile, whose resignation is being sought by the protesting students, has gone on leave, saying he was "advised to be little away from campus" to break the current "impasse".
The HCU website announced on Sunday that Vipin Srivastava, the seniormost professor of the University, will now perform the duties of the vice chancellor.
Rao was under fire for his handling of the issue relating to the suspension of five Dalit students, one of whom, Rohith Vemula, committed suicide on January 17.
Demanding the vice chancellor's resignation, students continued their protest on the campus.
Meanwhile, the university registrar also issued orders today with regard to revocation of suspension of four students. The executive council on Thursday had decided to revoke the suspension.
The students, however, continued their protest demanding the vice chancellor's ouster.
Some political parties here had earlier warned of an agitation if action was taken against two young Dalit scholars who shouted slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday during a convocation ceremony at Bhim Rao Ambedkar university.
The three students - Surendra Nigam, Amrendra Arya and Ram Karan Nirmal - were on late Friday asked to vacate the accommodation provided to them as 'guests' in the varsity hostel. A case has been lodged against them.
They shouted "Modi go back" and condemned the recent suicide of Hyderabad scholar Rohith Vemula. Their degrees have also been stopped and the medal of one of the students has been withheld.
PM Modi on Friday broke his silence on Vemula's suicide, saying he was deeply saddened by the tragedy.
In a speech at the 6th convocation of the Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University in Lucknow, he choked while referring to the scholar's death.
Hyderabad University, where Rohith Vemula committed suicide on January 17 had announced Rs. 8 lakh as ex-gratia assistance to the bereaved family.
(With Agency inputs)