Union minister, Hyderabad VC booked over Dalit student's suicide

Hyderabad: Police in Hyderabad on Monday booked union Minister Bandaru Dattatreya and three others for abetment of suicide and also for violations of the SC/ST Atrocities Act following the suicide of a Dalit research scholar of the University of Hyderabad.

University vice chancellor Appa Rao and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) leaders Sushil Kumar and Vishnu have also been booked.

The cases under Section 306 of the Indian Penal Code and also the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (prevention of atrocities) Act were filed in Gachibowli police station under Cyberabad police commissionerate limits.

Gachibowli inspector J. Ramesh Kumar told IANS that the cases were booked on a complaint by Prashant, a student.

"An investigating officer will conduct the investigations," the officer said when asked what action would be taken.

The complainant blamed Dattetreya for the suicide as he had written a letter to union Minister for Human Resource Development Smriti Irani, which led to suspension of Dalit students.

Dattetreya, who is union minister of state for labour (Independent Charge), had demanded action against "anti-national" and "anti-social" elements on the campus.

Rohith Vemula, a second-year research scholar of science, technology and society studies department, was found hanging from the ceiling of a room in New Research Scholars' hostel on Sunday night.

He was one of the five Dalit students suspended and expelled from the hostel. They were staging protest on the campus for the past 15 days.

Student groups alleged Rohith was in depression due the social boycott which he and other students were subjected to.

The police officer said they registered a case under Section 174 of the Criminal Procedure Code with regard to the student's suicide. "We will take further action after receiving post-mortem examination report," the inspector said.

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