Vemula death: Roopanwal commission suggests forum of appeal, counselling mechanism

New Delhi: The Justice A K Roopanwal Commission, formed by the government to look into the death of research scholar Rohith Vemula, is learnt to have said that students should get a forum to appeal in case they feel aggrieved by an decision of university authorities.

It is also learnt that the commission, which submitted its report to the HRD ministry recently, has also emphasised that there should be a proper counselling mechanism not just for students but also for research scholars.

Sources said that in its recommendations, the commission has also emphasised that there should be proper grievance redressal mechanisms, equal opportunity cells so that unfortunate incidents like Vemula suicide can be prevented.

“The government will focus that those recommendations are implemented that will ensure that proper mechanisms are in place,” a source said.

The government will not go into those aspects of the report which were not in the commission’s terms of reference including determination of Vemula’s caste, sources added.

It is also understood that in the report, the commission has held that Vemula could not be held to be a Dalit.

However, sources maintained that the ministry would focus on implementation of recommendations and prefer not go into aspects like determination of Vemula’s caste.

It is also learnt that the commission has not implicated the authorities including the Hyderabad Central University Vice Chancellor Appa Rao Podile.

Following Vemula’s death, there had been a huge political furore and outrage with the university top brass coming under fire with a range of allegations and criticism against the then HRD minister Smriti Irani and Union minister Bandaru Dattatreya over the incident.

Opposition parties had also attacked Dattatreya over a letter written by him about Hyderabad University and alleged that authorities had worked under political pressure. The issue was also raised several times by various parties in Parliament with government coming under heavy attack from Opposition parties.