Hyderabad varsity VC Appa Rao says he took leave to facilitate talks

UoH order depends on outcome of pleas filed in High Court.

Hyderabad: Sunday’s UoH order also makes it conditional upon the outcome of the two petitions in the High Court, one filed by Ms Vijaya Kumar seeking action against the alleged attackers of her son, ABVP activist N. Susheel Kumar, and the other by research scholars seeking revocation of their suspension.

The order is also conditional upon the outcome of the Gachibowli, Cyberabad police probe into the complaint of assault filed by Mr Susheel Kumar.

Speaking to DC later, Prof. Appa Rao said he had gone on leave to facilitate talks with the protesting students.

“I cannot say at this moment how many days I will be on leave. I have decided to be on leave till normalcy is restored,” Prof. Appa Rao said, and added, “I have been in touch with the faculty and likeminded organisations to enable talks.”

To a question on pressure from the Centre to take action against the research scholars, Prof. Appa Rao said the registrar had submitted an action taken report in the first week of January to the Union HRD ministry after the Dalit students were expelled from hostels and barred from public places on the campus.

He said the decision was not influenced by the HRD ministry. He defended expelling the students “from public places in groups,” which led to a feeling of social boycott, stating that there were several precedents in the university.

“We did not react to the reminders of the ministry. The action taken report was sent to the ministry only after expelling the students in January,” he said.

The university has still not replied to reminders from the ministry on the letter written by Congress MP V. Hanumantha Rao.

Prof. Appa Rao said he had no ideology, left or right or centrist. “I was president of the teachers association and I had raised several issues pertaining to the faculty and participated in demonstrations. When some attribute (my actions to) ideology, Manuvadam, I don’t understand,” he said.

Asked about his staying outside the campus and rumours that he was camping in a star hotel, Prof. Appa Rao said, “I am not disclosing my location due to security reasons as advised by the Cyberabad police. It is not true that I am staying in a star hotel. I have a lot of friends, relatives and well-wishers with whom I can stay.”

Prof. Appa Rao said that BJP MLC N. Ramachandra Rao, who is among those named in the FIR on Rohith Vemula's suicide, had actually met his predecessor, in-charge vice-chancellor R.P. Sharma, on the issue and not him.
Meanwhile, the SC/ST Teachers Association said Prof. Srivastava should immediately step down as in-charge and also expressed disappointment with the authorities for not sacking Prof. Appa Rao from his post.

( Source : deccan chronicle )
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