New Delhi, Jan 21: JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav today described the dalit student incident in Hyderabad University a "national shame" and accused the government of working against the interests of students from deprived sections of the society.
Citing a parliamentary committee report, the Rajya Sabha MP said it had raised serious concerns over the lackadaisical approach of the HRD Ministry and UGC as they had failed to take concrete measures to fill up the 27 per cent seats reserved for the OBC community.
"The HRD Ministry confessed that 40 per cent of the reserved category seats continue to remain vacant," he said, adding that lack of support group for dalit students, who face lot of pressure to succeed due to poor background, leads to disproportionately frequent suicides among such students.
"The dismal representation of faculty from suppressed classes of society also contributes to caste discrimination because students from similar backgrounds do not even find support group to hear their difficulties and to give them proper advice," Yadav said in a statement.
"Our heads bow down when the cases of suicide like that of Rohith Vemula happen and it a national shame for us," he said.
He noted that "atrocities, abuses and discrimination" against dalits and backward classes are not new in the country but such incidents are increasing manifold now in universities also.
"It is a worrying trend that this caste system has reached central institutions and universities."