Published: 15th November 2019
IITM students issue statement, demand Rohith Act, SC/ST/OBC cell on campus
The students made six demands in their statement to the administration, the first of which was a request to the IITM authorities and the Tamil Nadu police to conduct a fair investigation
Students from IIT Madras held a protest on campus to demand an investigation into the suicide of Fathima Latheef, the first-year Master's student who committed suicide a few days ago. Several students have also signed a statement demanding various other grievance cells and sensitisation measures in order to prevent such incidents in the future.
The students made six demands in their statement to the administration, the first of which was a request to the IITM authorities and the Tamil Nadu police to conduct a fair, unbiased and thorough investigation without any further delay. The students are also demanding that the MHRD and minority commission set up an independent enquiry into possibilities of academic harassment, "There has to be an enquiry into the recurring cases of suicide in the campus with a sense of immediacy. The independent enquiry should look into academic harassment, religious, caste or ethnicity-based discrimination on campus."
The IITians are also asking for the implementation of a functional SC/ST/OBC/ Minority Students' grievance and welfare cell, "We also urge IITM to set up a grievance redressal committee with representation of students to address issues of academic harassment and also a full-time appointment of gender-sensitive psychiatrists and strengthening of 24x7 mental health supports within the campus."
The students also wrote that they wanted the Rohith Act to be enacted to address and prevent student suicides in Indian universities.
"We the undersigned research scholars and Alumni of IIT Madras express heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Fathima Latheef whose demise has shocked us. Her presence as a bright young scholar was valued and this comes as a painful loss to the student community of HSS," they said.