Teachers, students slams HRD Minister Smriti Irani

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Hyderabad: The unabated protest continues at the University of Hyderabad. On Thursday teachers slammed the Union Minister Smirti Irani statement that a Dalit headed the committee which expelled five students.

The statement has raised voice against the HRD minister’s statement. The teachers have threatened to quit from their administrative posts.

The teachers and students have asserted that there are many holes in the minister’s statements. They have called it ‘misleading’ and ‘far from truth’.

The indefinite protest continues, as well as the hunger strike by seven of them. SC/ST teachers and officers’ forum slammed Smriti Irani for the claim that a Dalit headed the sub-committee of the sub-committee of executive council, which suspended five Dalit research scholars in November last.

Rohith Vemula, committed suicide on January 17 this year. The students were on a protest at a make-shift tent in the campus for 15 days. The students were thrown out of their hostel and were facing ‘social boycott’ on the campus.

The forum pointed out that it was Vipin Srivastava, professor of physics, who headed the six-member committee and not a Dalit as claimed by Irani.

“Only one Dalit was part of the panel and that too as a co-opted member, who has no decision making power,” said a spokesperson from the forum.

The minister told a news conference on Wednesday that the warden of the hostel from where the students were expelled was also a Dalit.

To this the forum said the warden enjoys no power to expel any student and he merely implemented an order given by his superior.

With students continuing their protests on the campus, the university remained shut for the fourth consecutive day on Thursday.

Politicians and leaders of various people’s organisations continue to pour in to express solidarity with the protesting students.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati are scheduled to visit the university on Thursday.