Hyderabad research scholar's suicide: 'Modi Murdabad' chants greet PM

Two students raised anti-Modi slogans after Prime Minister broke his silence on Dalit student’s suicide

Lucknow: Breaking his silence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday voiced his grief over the suicide of a Dalit scholar in Hyderabad Central University (HCU) even as some students raised slogans during his speech.

Students raise slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a convocation ceremony at the Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University in Lucknow yesterday. Pic/PTI
Students raise slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a convocation ceremony at the Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University in Lucknow yesterday. Pic/PTI

“...When there is news that a youth of my country, Rohith, was compelled to commit suicide, what his family must have gone through. Mother India has lost a son. There will be reasons, there will be politics (surrounding it) but the fact remains that a mother has lost her son. I feel the pain very well,” Modi said.

He was speaking as the Chief Guest at the convocation ceremony of the Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University here, which was marred by protest by two students, who were evicted by police as they shouted slogans like ‘Modi murdabad’ and ‘Modi go back, Modi go back’. The students, who were donning blue stoles, meant for Masters degree scholars, were detained after they shouted slogans as the Prime Minister took to the podium.

University Proctor Kamal Jaiswal said, “We were taken aback. We had taken all precautions. Action will be taken as per rules.”

The suicide by Rohith Vemula, a Dalit scholar of the Hyderabad Central University, has kicked up a major row with Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani and Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya coming under intense attack from political rivals, who have blamed them for the incident and demanded their removal.

Forensic test
According to police sources, Rohith Vemula’s suicide note will be sent to forensic lab as it would be a part of the investigation. While the announcement brought much cheer to protesting students, they vowed to continue their agitation unless the Centre agreed to meet their other demands, including expulsion of university vice-chancellor Appa Rao Podile.

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