Rohith Vemula suicide: My son was labelled 'extremist', 'anti-national', says dalit scholar's mother
The family of Rohith Vemula, the Hyderabad University PhD scholar who committed suicide, said that they would 'expose the lies' propagated by Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani in the Parliament.
New Delhi: The family of Rohith Vemula, the Hyderabad University PhD scholar who committed suicide, on Friday said that they would 'expose the lies' propagated by Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani in the Parliament to divert the entire issue which has started troubling the ruling BJP at the Centre.
Addressing a press conference here, Rohith's kin said, “Government is misleading the nation over Rohith Vemula's death. The government created adverse conditions which led to his death.”
Further hitting out at the Modi government, the dalit scholar's fried said, “Government directed Hyderabad University to socially boycot Rohith.”
"We want to expose false words being propagated by minister Smriti Irani in Parliament. Why is no action being taken against Smriti Irani who is repeatedly giving false statements?" he asked, ANI reported.
He further said that Union Minister Bandaru Dattatreya branded his friend Rohith as an extremist and PM Modi did not take any action against the minister.
"PM Modi said India has lost her son. I want to ask him, if India has lost her son, same son was branded as anti-national, same son was branded as extremist by your Cabinet Minister Bandaru Dattatreya, what action has PM Modi taken against him?"
"On the day when Rohith died, no police and doctors were allowed inside the University to revive him. This has malicious intent to divert the entire issue which has started troubling BJP. It was discovered by university officials at 7 pm that Rohith was dead," he added.
Rohith's friend said that Smriti Irani in Parliament had said that the Chief warden was part of the committee, however he never was. "She can go and check, he never was. Another lie," he said.
"Union Ministers Thawar Chand Gehlot and Smriti Irani claiming that Rohith Vemula is not a dalit. Let inquiry process come out. There is already a caste certificate which states that Rohith was a SC," he added.
Meanwhile, Vemula's mother, who was also present at the same press conference, claimed that the HRD Ministry had labelled her son as 'anti-national' and 'extremists'.
"Smriti Irani is lying and diverting issue, he never received the stipend for seven months. Letters that were forwarded from HRD Ministry indicated that students were branded as anti-national and extremists. I demand an explanation as to how my son became anti-national and extremist," Rohith's mother said.
Under fire over the Dalit scholar's suicide, Irani today said in the Rajya Sabha, "It is incorrect that there is no member of SC community in the inquiry committee. Rohith Vemula's mother asked for a judicial inquiry into child's death. I assured her justice will be done."
Irani on Wednesday pointed out that according to a report submitted to the Telangana High Court, the police had reached Rohith's hospital at 7:20 pm when they found the body.
"The police said that when they reached the hostel, they found the room open and the dead body was on the table. A hand written suicide note was found. The suicide note that was left behind does not blame anyone," she said.
"This is not my submission. This is what the police said. No one allowed a doctor near this child, to revive this child. Instead, his body was used as a political tool. No police was allowed till 6:30 am the following morning. Who tried to help this child?" she asked.
However, Chief Medical Officer M Rajshree, who confirmed Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula's death, has rebuffed HRD Minister Smriti Irani's claims in Parliament, saying she had reached the scene in three-five minutes.
"It was January 17, at around 7. 20 pm to 7.30 pm when I received a call NRS hostel telling that one students has attempted suicide please rush to the place, I reached the place within three to five minutes," ANI quoted Rajshree as saying.
(With ANI inputs)