Hyderabad: University of Hyderabad Vice-Chancellor P Appa Rao, who had been booked for abetment of suicide following the death of student Rohit Vemula, went on leave indefinitely on Sunday. Dr. Vipin Srivastava, the senior-most Professor, shall perform the duties of the Vice-Chancellor in his absence.
"I have discussed with senior colleagues and decided to go on leave. The senior-most professor is the VC," Appa Rao told Deccan Chronicle.
"The Vice-Chancellor will be on leave. In the absence of the Vice-Chancellor, Vipin Srivastava, the senior most Professor, shall perform the duties of the Vice-Chancellor wef 24-01-2016," the HCU said on its website.
Meanwhile, a day after the students sitting on a hunger strike against the death of Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula here were hospitalised, a fresh batch of seven students resumed the strike on Sunday demanding the removal of Appa Rao and grant of Rs 50 lakh compensation to the deceased's family.
The security personnel of the Hyderabad Central University (HCU) had last evening busted the hunger strike camp and admitted the seven fasting students to a hospital after their health condition worsened.
However, the students today stressed that they would continue their protest till their five demands were met.
"We will continue our agitation until our charter of five demands is met," a student leader said.
Meanwhile, Dr Ravindra Kumar, chief medical officer of the university's health centre, said out of the seven students who were hospitalised Saturday, five were asked to report in the out-patient department as their condition has improved.
The condition of two other students is stable and they are undergoing different tests in a private hospital, he said.
The student leaders had earlier announced that the indefinite hunger strike and other protests would continue until their five demands are met.
Rohith Vemula's body was found hanging in a hostel room on HCU campus on January 17.
The students have been demanding arrest of Union minister Bandaru Dattatreya, Vice Chancellor P Appa Rao and others who were named in the FIR lodged in connection with the case.
They have also asked the government to provide Rs 50 lakh compensation to Vemula's family, besides providing a job to one of the family members.
The students association has also demanded that the suspension of facilities to four students should be revoked.
We want all the cases filed (on earlier occasions) against the four research scholars to be dropped, they said.
Meanwhile, the Joint Action Council (JAC) spearheading the protest will hold a 'Chalo HCU' programme tomorrow.