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Students ransack HCU VC’s official residence


Hyderabad : A group of students today allegedly ransacked the official residence of Hyderabad Central University (HCU) Vice-Chancellor Prof Appa Rao Podile, protesting against his resumption of duty after having been on long leave.

Scores of students gathered at VC’s lodge after learning that Podile was holding a press conference to announce that he was going to resume charge today.

Prof Podile had gone on a long leave at the height of students’ agitation seeking justice for research scholar Rohith Vemula, who had committed suicide on January 17 at a hostel room in the HCU campus.

The agitating students today raised slogans against the VC. They broke window panes, smashed doors and television among other items.

One of the protesting students said, “Our primary demand is that the VC should not come…we lost Rohith Vemula. He (Prof Podile) is one of the culprits.”

“It’s almost over two months since the incident occurred but no action has been initiated,” he said.

The protesting students further demanded that the VC should be immediately arrested.

A large number of police personnel were deployed near the Vice Chancellor’s lodge as tension prevailed on the campus.

The press conference by Podile, which was scheduled at 11.30 AM, was cancelled due to the protests.

Meanwhile, Vice Chancellor Podile resumed the charge in the forenoon of March 22, according to the university’s website.

Meanwhile, HCU’s Vice Chancellor Prof Appa Rao Podile hit out at the group of students, who allegedly ransacked his official residence, and said they should have represented their issues in a “democratic way”.

“This is gross violence. Students resorting to this kind of violence…without following some democratic processess…it’s really unfortunate for the education system. Students must know the democratic way of representing their issues,” Prof Podile told PTI.

“They should not disturb somebody performing their function. I have joined as Vice-Chancellor…resumed charge and I should be allowed to function. They should have held discussions. Without discussions, they have ransacked the VC’s bungalow,” he said.

Prof Podile said thousands of students and hundreds of faculty members are “worried about this kind of situation” on the campus, indicating that they want normalcy in the university.

The VC said he does not know for what purpose a group of students is demanding his resignation.

“Let them explain more clearly. What is the mistake that I have done. Let it be proved in court. Let somebody prove that. Without proving somebody guilty and you make demand with some 50-100 students in a 5,000 student university. How long can we run the university like this?”  he said.

He said police and several faculty members along with students protected him today, otherwise there would have been a “security problem”.

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