Dalit scholar’s suicide: BJP dalit leader attacks Smriti Irani and Bandaru Dattatreya

, 7:33 PM IST

New Delhi: In embarrassment for BJP, former Union minister and party leader Sanjay Paswan on Thursday accused Union ministers Smriti Irani and Bandaru Dattatreya of showing “grave insensitivity” to the issue of a dalit student which led to his suicide and sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement on it.

Paswan, a member of BJP’s National Executive who once headed its SC cell, said “the least” the government can do is sack the Univerity of Hyderabad Vice Chancellor and institute a CBI probe into the matter.

Alleging that Rohith Vemula was subjected to “grave crime and grave insensitivity”, Paswan attacked Dattatreya for calling him “anti-national” in his letter to the HRD Ministry and added that Irani too was responsible for “mishandling” the affair.

Coming from a dalit leader of the party, these comments will embarrass BJP at a time when has been accused of being “anti-dalit” by the opposition.

“Grave crime has been committed. It’s grave insensitivity. State government is responsible and so is the univeristy administration. Bandaru ji is also responsible. He called him anti-national. Irani ji is also responsible as she mishandled the issue,” he said.

“The Prime Minister himself is a very sensitive person. He should make a statement. The matter has become so serious that there should be a CBI inquiry,” he said.

Paswan was a minister of state in the NDA government headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee and later headed BJP’s Scheduled Caste cell.