Hyderabad varsity students’ union urges president to sack VC

Hyderabad: The students’ union of the University of Hyderabad has urged President Pranab Mukherjee to sack Vice Chancellor P. Appa Rao to restore peace in the university.

In a letter to the president, who is the Visitor of the university, the union said Rao was an accused in the suicide of Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula and also unleashed brutal violence on the students.

Students’ union president Zuhail K.P. told reporters that they sought the president’s intervention to save the university from further damage.

He brought to the notice of the president that the two-member fact finding committee appointed by the human resource development ministry to investigate the disciplinary action on five Dalit research scholars which led to the suicide of Vemula pointed out that the university administration under Appa Rao mishandled the case.

Appa Rao was booked under the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and for abetment to suicide.

The high court did not grant him bail while the judicial commission formed is still probing the matter, the letter said.

It was also brought to the president’s notice that Appa Rao, instead of waiting for the judicial commission’s report, showed utter contempt for the judicial process by cancelling his leave and resuming office on March 22 with the help of some teachers loyal to him and ABVP students.

Zuhail said that when the students protested his resumption of office, he “unleashed brutal violence on the protesting students to levels unheard of in the university history”.

Telangana Police arrested 24 students, two professors and one media person after a baton charge and booked many others including women.

The letter alleged that Appa Rao with the help of ‘loyal’ non-teaching staff closed the hostel messes, cut off water supply and disconnected internet.