Former Hyderabad varsity V-C asks incumbent Appa Rao to quit

Updated - November 17, 2021 03:10 am IST

Published - January 26, 2016 02:04 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Seyed Ehtesham Hasnain, who was the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hyderabad from 2005-2011, when Dalit Ph.D scholar Senthil Kumar committed suicide because he was denied a research supervisor, says the current V-C, Appa Rao Podle, must resign for failing to reach out to his students. “You must own up your responsibility, Appa Rao,” Mr.Hasnain said.

Mr.Hasnain’s comments to The Hindu come amidst protests by students at the university demanding the resignation of Mr.Rao and revocation of the temporary appointment of Vipin Srivastava in place of Mr.Rao, who has gone on leave. According to the students, Mr.Srivastava is under a cloud for his role in Senthil Kumar’s suicide. Mr.Hasnain describes Mr.Srivastava as a first-rate academic but whose thinking is a little flawed. “He expects all his students to do brilliantly in their examinations and research but forgets that not all students live a life of privileges.”

Mr.Hasnain said that Mr.Rao may not have been involved in the decision to expel the five Dalit students, including Rohith Vemula, but as the head of the university, he ought to have examined the case carefully. “Hyderabad is not as cold as Delhi, but it gets quite chilly. What kind of V-C would decide to send his own children to the footpath,” Mr.Hasnain asked.

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