Dalit women´s body slams retired judge´s sexist comment against Rohith Vemula’s mother


Ambedkarite Women Against Atrocities, India (AWAA) issues statement condemning the report released by retired judge K Roopanwal whose mandate was to inquire into the facts and circumstances leading to research scholar Rohith Vemula’s death

Here is the full text of the statement;

Dear Friends,

We the members of  Ambedkarite Women Against Atrocities’, India (AWAA)  condemned here the wording of the report by retired judge K. Roopanwal, which indicates an attempt of defamation and character assassination of Radhika Vemulla. Under the garb of fact finding  the committee has done all efforts to find out the cast of Radhika and Rohit as the remarks were made by Mr. Roopanwal directly  was an attack  on Radhika’s  character.

The comments were not only just gender biased  but insulting womanhood and her human rights to live with human dignity.

We protest against this discriminatory , biased report, we  demand to file a case against  Mr. Roopanwal to damage  the dignity of Radhika Vemula by doing character assassinations and passed scurrilous remarks.  We , Ambedkarite women from all over India demand a public apology from Mr. Roopanwal and a compensation following such a deplorable statement.

This is in the context of the news was published on  6th October 2016, in the Indian Express,  was titled “ The whitewash: Probe alleges Rohith Vemula’s mother faked Dalit status, blames him for his suicide”.

We find that the special efforts were made to  disclose Mr. Roopnwal’s committee’s report  through specific media because they wanted to shift entire matter to target Radhika Vemula and proving her caste as OBC would be an advantage for them to escape from the punishment under atrocity act. 

In this news, according to the reporter, the one man commission was appointed whose mandate was to inquire into the facts and circumstances leading to Vemula’s death, review existing grievance mechanism for students at HCU and suggest improvements. But she did not take any cognizance  of the fact that in the same month on 25th  August 2016, another tribunal report was also published. The tribunal was organized by the concerned teachers, writers, and lawyers of Hyderabad.  It was chaired by Justice  K. Chandru,  Retired judge High Court Madras. Prof Govardhan Wankhede, TISS, Bombay and Prof Ghanshyamdas Shah were the members.

The brief to the tribunal was to examine the circumstances leading to leading to the suicide committed by Rohit Vemula Chakravarthy, a Research Scholar as well as the police action subsequent to his death and the existing caste discrimination practiced by the University. And, to recommend among other things, besides protocols to enable marginalized students to fully participate and enjoy the academic, political and social space of the university more productively and effectively; and to examine the existing grievance redressal systems to prevent caste discrimination in the University of Hyderabad and evaluate their effectiveness.

We member of AWAA demand to disclose both the reports publicly through media and Government.

We express our solidarity with Radhika Vemula and her kids as well as  congratulate Ambedkar Student’s Association for it’s success in student’s elections. There are several efforts made by Government, University and narrow minded casteist people to suppress women’s voice especially women from Dalit-Adivasi-OBC and minorities. Here we also demand to sustain and strengthen an act against Atrocities (SC/ST)

AWAA is an all India level network of prominent individuals and organizations of women who beleive in Phule-Ambedkarite ideology. This was founded by social activists, writers and researchers like Lata Pratibha Madhukar, Abhinaya Ramesh in Maharashtra. It was very much supported by  prominent socio-political activists, theoreticians, professors, artists, engineers, environmentalists, and writers from other parts of India 

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