Rohith Vemula suicide: Protest in University of Hyderabad turns violent

Jawaharlal Nehru University students leader Kanhaiya Kumar will visit University of Hyderabad on Wednesday.

Updated: Mar 22, 2016, 18:59 PM IST
Rohith Vemula suicide: Protest in University of Hyderabad turns violent

Hyderabad: The police acted tough and evicted the protesting students of University of Hyderabad from outside the officials residence of Vice Chancellor Appa Rao Podile, who rejoined work after nearly two months on leave today.

However, the scene turned ugly, when some protesters pelted stones at the cops on duty. A policeman was injured.

Police bundled out many students out of the campus, triggering strong protest by teaching and non-teaching staff members. Police also arrested few students and faculty members.

The police action came after the students, who have been protesting ever since Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula committed suicide inside the varsity campus, today barged into the office of the vice chancellor and ransacked the furniture.

Meanwhile, the VC said he was ready to meet and talk with the agitating students. However, at the same time, he categorically said that a section of students cannot tell him that he should go on leave.

"If any group of students can dictate who should be the Vice Chancellor, this is going to be a national problem not just in University of Hyderabad. Tomorrow, any hundred or fifty students can say this particular Vice Chancellor should be there," Podile said.

"The students did not resort to a dialogue. They should have given me a representation. Without telling anything ransacking the office to this magnitude is uncalled for and not expected from students of University of Hyderabad. All the teachers feel that this is unbecoming of the students," he added.

Appa Rao had gone on leave on January 24 amid massive protests on the campus over the suicide of Rohith Vemula.

The Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, an umbrella grouping of various students' bodies, has blamed Appa Rao, central ministers Smriti Irani and Bandaru Dattatreya and a leader of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) for the suspension of five Dalit students, one of whom Rohith committed suicide on January 17.

Rohith, 26, committed suicide by hanging himself in the Hyderabad Central University campus in January. He was earlier suspended from the university hostel in August last year by the administration for allegedly attacking an ABVP leader.

The university had allegedly stopped giving scholarship to Rohith after the incident which led to financial hardship and culminated in his suicide.

Jawaharlal Nehru University students leader Kanhaiya Kumar will visit University of Hyderabad on Wednesday.