Not suicide, it’s murder: Kejriwal attacks Modi on Dalit student death

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jan 19, 2016 11:48 IST
Police use water canon to disperse members of various student organisations during a protest in front of HRD Ministry office at Shashtri Bhawan, demanding to sack the Vice Chancellor of Hyderabad Central University against the death of Rohith Vemula, a Dalit research fellow who committed suicide. (Vipin Kumar / Hindustan Times)

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal renewed his attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday, asking him to apologise over the suicide of a Dalit research scholar at the University of Hyderabad.

“It’s not suicide. It’s murder. It’s murder of democracy, social justice n equality.Modi ji shd sack ministers n aplogoize to the nation,” the Delhi CM tweeted early on Tuesday.

Rohith Vemula, a Ph D student, committed suicide by hanging himself in a hostel room on Sunday, triggering massive protests by students who alleged that he took the extreme step because of discrimination and social boycott.

Rohith and four other students were subjected to boycott by the authorities of the university, the students said.

“Modi govt constitutionally duty bound to uplift dalits. Instead Modi ji’s ministers got five dalit students ostracised n suspended,” Kejriwal added.

The five students of Ambedkar Students Association (ASA) were suspended and later expelled from hostel following a clash with leaders of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).

ASA alleged that the action was taken against them after Union minister for labour Bandaru Dattatreya wrote a letter to Union minister for Human Resources Development Smriti Irani.

Md. Salim, politburo member of the CPI(M) told Hindustan Times Modi must speak up and announce what he plans to do to stop such discrimination against Dalit students at institutes of higher education. “We have seen how Dalits are discriminated in villages, schools and other places. But the BJP and the RSS are trying to inflict this dangerous discrimination even in higher education institutes and encroach on the fundamental rights of students. It is time the PM must speak up and assure the Dalits. why is he still maintaining silence?” Salim said.

The party is likely to send a high-level delegation to the university soon, he said.

The police on Monday booked a case against Dattatreya, vice-chancellor Appa Rao and two BJP leaders for abetment of suicide and violation of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (prevention of atrocities) Act.

A two-member team will arrive in Hyderabad to probe the incident.

Read: Fresh protests erupt in Hyderabad over Dalit scholar’s suicide

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