Hyderabad: University of Hyderabad research scholar Rohith Vemula not naming anyone in his suicide note will not help the accused in the case, which include Union minister Bandaru Dattatreya and vice-chancellor Appa Rao Podile.
Legal experts say that in abetment to suicide cases a ‘suicide note’ is not the conclusive proof and corroborative evidence and circumstances have to be considered as per several High Court judgements.
Experts say that the claim of HRD minister Smriti Irani that Rohith’s suicide note exonerated the accused is not valid and if police investigation finds evidence linking that the circumstances created by the accused including alleged social boycotting, expulsion and other troubles have led to the suicide then the accused have to be prosecuted.
More importantly in Rohith’s case his first letter written to Prof. Appa Rao on December 18, 2015, will be the first piece of evidence to nail the accused. In that note, Rohith had written: “I request your highness to make preparations for the facility ‘euthanasia’ for students like me.”
Senior advocate C. Mallesh Rao said, “All the circumstances have to be taken into consideration in this case. How many letters he wrote prior to his suicide and their content? In the letter he wrote to the vice-chancellor he had clearly mentioned about his intention to end his life and blamed the vice-chancellor.
This letter shall be read with the last suicide note. They are part of a series and not a separate thing. The culprits shall not claim innocence based on the last note.”
Rohit had asked to serve 10 mg of Sodium Azide to all Dalit students at the time of admission with direction to use when they fell reading Ambedkar.
He also asked the vice-chancellor to supply rope to the rooms of all Dalit students.
Senior advocate Mr C. Mallesh Rao said, “Serious steps taken by authorities like ‘expelling students from public places in groups’ which is nothing but social boycott and solitary confinement; a previous letter written by Rohit to vice-chancell or which had clearly blaming him for troubling Dalit students; no response from vice-chancellor on it; other alternative pressure from Union Minister Dattatreya writing a letter to Srmit Irani and in turn she sending series of reminders.”
“Notices given to Rohit and other Dalit students and fake assault case by ABVP, all these aspects have to be considered as circumstances that forced him to end his life,” he elaborated.
Mr Rao added, “In the later suicide note he wrote about system and society deficiencies and not against any individuals.”
“So the people at the helm of affairs who caused these deficiencies in the system in this specific case of him leading to his suicide have to be booked as abettors.”
“The omission of the vice-chancellor and other accused in addressing the issues troubling Dalit students are to be considered.”...