Political involvement in University judgement
- Five Dalit scholars from the University of Hyderabad were denied entry in the university premises and barred from participating in the students' election.
- This unjust administrative decision, taken by the University, was alleged to be politically influenced by BJP Union Minister for Labour Dattatreya and BJP MLC Ramachandra Rao.
- This was done due to a fallout between the Ambedkar Student Association (ASA) and ABVP.
What led to the Dalit boycott?
- The Dalit scholars were boycotted as an aftermath of a Facebook post made by Susheel Kumar, President of ABVP-HCU, where he called the ASA 'goons'.
- Susheel apologized calling it an emotional outburst for the recent DU incident and also, made allegations against five Dalit ASA supporters for assaulting him even after an official apology.
- An enquiry committee was set which suspended the five Dalits.
ASA v/s ABVP in Delhi University
On 1 August, ABVP supporters stopped the screening of the documentary on 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots in DU for propagating anti-Hindu sentiments. The ASA students reacted to the ABVP by holding protests for the next two days around the campus.
JACSJ members go on fast against administration
- Members of the Joint Action Committee for Social Justice decided to go on a fast for the revocation on the judgment of the Dalit scholars.
- Over 30 students occupied the University's administration building lobby and didn't allow the employees to enter till the decision was modified.
- The students burnt effigies and raised slogans against the University's administration and RSS-BJP for saffronizing the education system.
Victimized Dalit scholar commits suicide
- One of the boycotted dalits, Rohith Vemula hung himself from the ceiling fan using ASA banner as the noose and was discovered by his friend Vijay.
- The suicide led to more protests where the Dean of Students Welfare, Deputy Registrar and security guards were attacked.
- The students kept the body at the hostel entrance and demanded the Vice Chancellor's presence.
Who was Rohith Vemula?
Rohith Vemula was a Ph.D. scholar in Society Sciences and Science Technology in UoH. He was also the student leader for ASA and worked for the welfare of Dalits until he was boycotted by the University administration.
Union Minister charged for suicide of Dalit victim
- Rohith Vemula, the victim who committed suicide, was taken for post-mortem and autopsy reports are awaited.
- Gachibowli police are booking Union Minister Dattatreya for abetting the suicide of the Dalit scholar and also, the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes Prevention of Atrocities Act for the decision against the five Dalit scholars.
- Students have decided to write to HRD minister Smriti Irani against Dattatreya.
Dalit suicide: Irani says not a caste-confrontation issue
- HRD minister Smriti Irani refused to label the UoH student Rohith Vemula's suicide case as a Dalit vs non-Dalit confrontation by stating that attempts are made to polarize the UoH campus by misinterpretation of facts.
- Hyderabad Central University VC Appa Rao, who was at the centre of the suicide controversy, labelled the suicide as 'regrettable'.
- He also declined BJP's involvement in the decision-making process.
Panel reveals that Vemula's mother faked Dalit status
- The Justice Ashok Roopanwal panel has stated that Rohith Vemula's mother had faked Dalit status to avail SC benefits and that the scholar committed suicide out of personal frustration and not persecution.
- The report also stated that there was no interference by University officials or then HRD Minister Smriti Irani.
- So far the HRD ministry has not commented on the development.
Rohith Vemula's Dalit status surfaces in a video
- Days after a judicial panel declined Rohith Vemula's 'dalit' status in a probe report of his suicide, a video in which Vemula speaks of his caste status has gone viral.
- In it, Vemula calls himself a 'Dalit from Guntur district' while talking about his suspension from the University of Hyderabad.
- Rohit Vemula's suicide was labelled as an outcome of caste discrimination.
Rohith Vemula's family still awaits justice
- In January 2016, Rohith Vemula, a PhD student committed suicide at the University of Hyderabad after alleged caste-based discrimination.
- Since then, his mother Radhika Vemula has been fighting for justice for her son, gathering support in different parts of the country.
- Government reports have submitted contradictory findings and the focus largely remains unshifted from his caste-status as a Dalit.