HRD Ministry refuses to share report on Rohit Vemula’s death

Rohith Vemula, a student of Hyderabad University, committed suicide on January 17

Human Resources and Development Ministry refused to share the report on Rohit Vemula’s death. The Ministry has rejected the RTI (Right To Information) plea for making public the panel’s report on the death of research scholar Rohith Vemula in University of Hyderabad.

In a reply to the appeal filed by PTI, the HRD Ministry said, “As such I do not find any infirmity with the reply of the Central Public Information Officer (given earlier) and your appeal stands disposed of as far as the answering Appellate Authority is concerned.”

Replying to a query in the RTI, HRD ministry had told that a copy of the report cannot be provided as the file concerned was under submission.

In February last year, a Commission of Inquiry under Justice (retired) Ashok Kumar Roopanwal was set up to review this issue. The Commission was asked to submit its report within three months of its formation.

After the report was submitted to the Ministry, media reports had claimed that questions on Vemula’s Dalit status were raised by the Commission who further had attributed his suicide to personal reasons.

Rohit’s suicide in January 2016 had sparked a huge political furore and political parties in opposition had targeted the HRD Minister Smriti Irani as well as the Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya who had written a letter to the former related to the matter.