Rahul Gandhi to address Osmania University students on August 14
Osmania University, which was the hotbed of the movement for separate a Telangana state between 2009 and 2014, is all set to witness a major political activity after a gap of more than four years.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi, who will be on a two-day visit to Telangana on August 13 and 14 to kick-start the party’s campaign for the next elections, is expected to address a students’ rally on the 100-year-old campus on August 14 and seek their support to the party.
On Friday, Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee president N Uttam Kumar Reddy held a meeting with OU students’ joint action committee representatives to discuss the arrangements to be made for Rahul’s meeting with students.
“We will seek permission from the police and also the OU authorities for a meeting with thousands of students in front of the historic Arts College building. If it is not possible, we shall have to make arrangements for an interaction with select group of students at the University auditorium,” a PCC spokesman said.
Students of OU under the banner of OU Students JAC fought a bitter battle during the movement for separate Telangana state. While some students committed suicide on the campus for the sake of a separate state, others braved lathi-charge and arrests during the movement.
However, after the formation of Telangana in June 2014, the students of OU felt neglected. They turned hostile towards the Telangana Rashtra Samithi government led by chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao for not addressing the issue of rampant unemployment and fulfilling the promise of filling up vacant government posts, besides not lifting cases filed against hundreds of students who took part in the agitation. In December 2017, when the students tried to take out a rally for jobs, the police thwarted their attempt and arrested scores of students.
In May 2015, too, Rahul was expected to address a rally of students on the OU campus, but the plan was dropped as police refused permission. Last year, OU authorities issued a circular banning all kinds of political meetings on campus.
Telangana Congress leaders are upbeat over Rahul’s proposed tour to Telangana on August 13 and 14, for the first time after taking charge as the party president. “Rahul will participate in the Praja Chaitanya Bus Yatra in Ranga Reddy district and address a public meeting. He will interact with the party functionaries and cadre in Hyderabad,” PCC chief Uttam Kumar Reddy said.