Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday accused Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani of playing caste politics over suicide by Rohit Vemula, a Dalit research scholar of University of Hyderabad.
Addressing a gathering of students at the UoH campus, Kejriwal also demanded the dismissal of University’s Vice- Chancellor P. Appa Rao for Rohit’s suicide. Alleging that instead of sacking the VC, Smriti Irani played “dirty caste politics”, he demanded that the Union Minister tender an apology for her acts. He said he was ready to stage a sit-in at VC’s office seeking his ouster. However, he said he was advised against it by the student community.
Kejriwal also dismissed the reports that some ABVP students were assaulted by Rohit and his friends which consequently led to their suspension. He quoted medical reports and an affidavit filed by the University Registrar which proves that the allegation of assault was concocted. He also condemned Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatraya for calling Rohit and his friends as “anti-national, casteist and extremist” in his letter to the Union HRD Minister. “It is a matter of shame that a responsible central minister, without inquiring about the facts, had concluded that the Ambedkar Student group of which Vemula was a member was casteist and anti-national.”
The Delhi Chief Minister said Vemula was the son of a farm worker who joined the university on the strength of his academic merit. “When such bright students have to commit suicide, it is a shame on the entire society,” he said. (INN)