Incharge Vice-Chancellor of Hyderabad Central University (HCU) Vipin Srivastava today faced the ire of agitating students when he reached their protest site to initiate a dialogue with them to break the impasse over Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula's suicide.
Srivastava stood at the protest site for a few minutes even as the students raised slogans against him, asking him 'to go back'.
He left after a few minutes. Some one banged on his car when it was about to move.
"We have been criticised constantly that no one is making an effort. The truth of the matter is that the police have been stopping me. It is stopping us, Prof Appa Rao Podile (the VC who has gone on leave) as well as me. Because they felt that it may result in a law and order situation," Srivastava said.
Noting that a large number of students, agitating over the suicide of Rohith, gheraoed his residence in the staff quarters this morning when he was busy in a meeting with non-teaching staff, he said he prevailed upon the police today to let him go and interact with the protesting students.
"I told the police once again that, look, this is what is happening and they are not unruly. I would like to go and talk to them then they gave me the clearance and I went along with my colleague... both of us went there. I think you were there, you saw what happened," Srivastava said.
He said he could have stayed at the protest site for a longer duration but felt that there was no purpose.
"I could stay have stayed for longer. But then, I did not see any purpose because they were not willing to speak. I thought they wanted some body to come and talk to them. So I went, there was no possibility," the incharge VC said.
Dickens, a representative of protesting students, said they hold Srivastava "equally culpable" in the alleged wrong affairs in the university and that they are demanding that he should step down from the post of VC.
"We will not actually have any dialogue with any committee formed under the order of the Vice Chancellor. We see him (Srivastava) equally culpable on the wrongs that have been done as the chairperson of executive council. We want him to step down first that is why we also went to his house," he said.