An uneasy calm prevailed at the Zoology Department of Osmania University on Monday after K. Srinivas, a research scholar, committed suicide by consuming chemicals in the neuroscience lab.

The incident came to light when Kiran, another research scholar, went to the lab around 8 a.m on Monday. After repeatedly knocking the door, Kiran grew suspicious and with the help of watchman Bhishma, he opened the door.

“There was a soft drink bottle and a glass filled with some chemical. A white powder was also found near the glass. There were blood stains in Srinivas’s ears, nose and mouth,” recalled Kiran.

Most research scholars stay put late in the night in the campus laboratories, and Srinivas’s younger brother K. Satish said he had not attended his phone calls since Sunday night. Srinivas was staying in room No. 109 at the new PG hostel.

He was depressed over the fact that he might not get selected for a junior lecturer post after the government’s announcement that preference would be given to regularising contract lecturers. This apart, his fellowship, too, was stopped for the last few months, Satish added.

Hailing from Miryala village near Suryapet of Nalgonda district, Srinivas was doing research on neuroscience and autism and would have completed the research in six months.Soon after the news spread, students gathered at the zoology department and raised slogans against the university authorities.

The university should extend financial help to Srinivas’s kin and provide employment to one member of his family, said B. Dattatreya, a research scholar.

Meanwhile, Osmania University police registered a case of suspicious death. University Vice-Chancellor Prof. S. Satyanarayana said a five-member internal enquiry committee would be constituted to ascertain the reasons for Srinivas’s suicide.

The committee members will interact with students and teachers and submit a report in 15 days. He also appealed to students to approach him if they faced problems with regard to the attitude of guides.

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