UoH plans to remove Rohith’s memorial

UoH plans to remove Rohith’s memorial
Highlights

In a move that could escalate tension on the University of Hyderabad campus, the varsity administration has decided to remove Rohith’s memorial, bust and all unauthorised structures at the campus shopping complex. After suicide of Rohith Vemula on January 17, students erected a makeshift tent, Rohith stupa and bust and podium at the Shopping Complex.

Hyderabad: In a move that could escalate tension on the University of Hyderabad campus, the varsity administration has decided to remove Rohith’s memorial, bust and all unauthorised structures at the campus shopping complex. After suicide of Rohith Vemula on January 17, students erected a makeshift tent, Rohith stupa and bust and podium at the Shopping Complex.

According to the minutes of the meeting of the Deans of Schools and the Director of College of Integrated Studies held at the vice-chancellor’s camp office on March 24, if required police assistance would be taken to remove these unauthorised structures.

Further, given the volatile situation in the varsity, the administration decided to recruit security guards through an outsourcing agency and also explore possibility of using the services of Central Industrial Security Force on a pilot basis. The university has handed over this task to the registrar and dean of students’ welfare to prepare an action plan.

Before removing the structures, a notice would be served to the concerned and circular would be issued by the administration stating that nobody should use varsity’s space for installing statues, busts and other unauthorised structures.

“The responsibility of removing bust and statues obviously refers to Rohith's stupa and bust, being given to Babu, a dalit faculty member, smacks of the administration's ill-intentions. More importantly, many of us feel this as a provocation at its best, instead of de-escalating the situation. It is an invitation to escalate the problem -- not to mention anything about justice to Rohith and his friends,” opined SC/ST faculty members and concerned faculty.

In order to have foolproof surveillance system, adequate security cameras, swiping cards of multi utility for students and required gadgets would be installed. A team of faculty and officers would deliberate on these logistics to be put at vulnerable places. Though the university had already decided to bar media from entering in to the university, it now wants to keep constant vigil on the sneaking of media on to the campus.

“The PRO should be notified as and when media illegally makes its presence on the campus, so as to deal with them appropriately,” the minutes of meeting stated. The university is of the view that following vandalism at the VC’s lodge by a group of students, media did not report the event minutely.

Now the varsity has entrusted the work of putting a comprehensive note on the incident accompanied by photos and videos to official spokesperson Vipin Srivastava, Department of History, Sanjay Subodh, Department of Communication Vasuki Belavadi and PRO Ashish Jacob. The report has been placed on the university website along with a Hindi translation.
Members during the meeting granted permission for the annual cultural fest, Sukoon for the academic year to be held on April 7.

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