New Delhi: The HRD ministry, on the basis of the report of its fact-finding team, has decided to set up a judicial commission to look into the sequence of events leading to Rohith’s suicide and submit its report within three months.
Meanwhile, trouble is brewing for the Narendra Modi government as the Telangana government report sent to the Centre has reaffirmed that the deceased student, who committed suicide at HCU, was a Dalit and the case comes under the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act.
UoH officials were insensitive: Report
The Telangana government’s report on Rohith Vemula’s death shares details of the complaint and the FIR where it is alleged that “Rohith under went mental agony and could not bear the atrocities, humiliation, harrassment, insults and injustice” which he was subject to at the “instigation and abetment” of those named in the FIR, that caused his death. The ministries are studying the report and the social justice ministry, that is the nodal ministry on issues relating to SC/STs, has taken serious note.
The state government report to the home and social justice ministries also encloses the letter written by the minister of state for labour and accused in the case, Bandaru Dattatreya, to HRD minister Smriti Irani on August 17, where he alleged the “university administration had become a mute spectator” to events where the university had become a “den of casteist, extremist and anti-national politics” when a large section of students held a protest against the execution of Yaqub Memon and clashed with the ABVP over this issue.
Many allege that Rohith’s suspension along with four other students followed the minister’s letter and the clash with the ABVP leader led to his depression and eventual suicide. According to the report, while the first FIR was registered on January 17, under Section 174 CrPC mandating the police to enquire into the suicide, a second FIR was registered on January 18 for abetment to suicide and invoking Section 3 of SC/ST POA Act dealing with offences of atrocities against SC/STs.
The two-member fact-finding team, in its report to the HRD ministry, is learnt to have also found a lack of “sensitivity” shown in some areas by UoH authorities in dealing with the events that led to suicide. The report sent to the social justice ministry and Union home ministry, removes any doubt and says Rohith Vermula was a dalit scholar.
Smriti Irani calls Rohith’s mother, promises probe
The Union Government is taking a serious note of the situation in UoH as HRD minister Smriti Irani called deceased research scholar Rohith Vemula’s mother Radhika on Friday and promised a judicial probe into the incidents that led to her son’s suicide. She also said the inquiry committee will be headed by a High Court judge. If V-C Appa Rao Podile was found guilty, he would be suspended, the minister told Rohith’s mother. Striking a personal chord, Irani also explained that she hesitated to call her so far as the family was in a state of deep mourning.
I feel pain of mother, says Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi broke his silence on Rohith Vemula’s suicide. Addressing the convocation at the BR Ambedkar University, Mr Modi said: “India has lost a son and I can imagine what his family must be going through. I feel for his mother, and know what she must be feeling having lost her son.”
Was concerned for students, says BJP MLC
BJP MLC N Ramachander Rao, a senior leader caught in the suicide storm in UoH, says he was making serious efforts to get the punishment order against the five research students lifted, but the suicide of Rohith Vemula happened in between. He told DC on Friday that discipline was important but no one wanted the career of the students to be affected and was to meet varsity officials on January 18 for this purpose.