HYDERABAD: Extending their solidarity with students who are on huger strike demanding justice to Rohith, 14 Dalit members of faculties at the University of Hyderabad on Thursday resigned from their administrative posts such as controller of examinations, hostel wardens, deans of departments and chief medical officer.
Several more are likely to follow suit.
The faculty members belonging to the Dalit community, under the banner of UoH SC/ST Teachers and Officers Forum, unanimously decided to quit their administration positions and submitted their resignation letters on Thursday. Prof V.Krishna, controller of examinations who was among those resigned, said, “We are with the students. It was a collective decision taken by all of us. So far between 10 and 15 of us have resigned. More will follow suit.”
They have condemned the remark of Union minister of human resource development Smriti Irani that the committee which decided to expel the scholars was headed by a senior Dalit faculty member.
“It was unfortunate that the Union minister misrepresented the facts of the case and said the senior-most Dalit professor actually headed the executive council sub-committee which took the decision to suspend the students. But the fact is it was headed by an upper-caste professor, Vipin Srivatsava, and the committee had no Dalit faculty,” the forum said. Moreover, the executive council had never had a Dalit member in its history, it added.
In a press statement issued on Thursday, the forum also pointed out that the Union HRD minister had missed out on the basic facts of university administration. “It is unfortunate that the honourable minister is misleading the nation by observing that hostel wardens have suo motu powers to expel students. Such a baseless and misleading statement amounts to bringing down the morale of Dalits who are holding administrative positions in this and other universities. By deflecting this issue, the HRD minister is absolving herself and Bandaru Dattatreya of responsibility for the death,” the forum said.
Despite the university’s decision to terminate the suspension of four Dalit scholars on Thursday, the forum members said their protest would continue. There would not be any change in their decision until all the demands of the protesting students were met and justice was done to Rohit Prof. Krishna told Express.