Hyderabad: Facing protests over his return, University of Hyderabad (UoH) Vice Chancellor P Appa Rao on Monday said it was painful to see students and a couple of faculty members spending time in jail.
He appealed to students to rise above anger and confrontation and desist from violence.
The vice chancellor made the appeal minutes after a city court granted bail to 25 students and two faculty members who were arrested police during a protest over his return on 22 March.
Appa Rao said it was "very painful" to see them spending time in jail. "It's very painful to see some of our students and couple of faculty members from campus spend time in jail. While I wanted to intervene, legal system is beyond our control and jurisdiction.
"I request the students to resist any temptation for violence on campus or anywhere else, as it would not yield any productive outcomes. Please restrain yourself from causing pain to yourself, your parents and the university," said Appa Rao in a written and video appeal.
"You have all other avenues to express yourself. I humbly wish all students & student unions to sit together and resolve issues. I & my team will wholeheartedly support you in this endeavour," he added.
A section of students are demanding his removal and his arrest, holding him responsible for the suicide of Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula.
He had proceeded on leave on January 24 after he was named in First Information Report (FIR) booked under SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act.
Appa Rao's return on 22 March led to fresh bout of protest and violence with Joint Action Committee of Social Justice, an umbrella group of 14 student bodies, refusing to accept him as the head of the institution.
Stating that University of Hyderabad is one of the prestigious universities in this country and has a legacy of excellence, he noted that recent incidents were painful not just for administration but also to thousands of students on the campus and many more thousands of university alumni across the world.
"I request you to rise above anger and confrontational attitude as students of higher education in this university. I and my team wish to lead by example in this area, with our willingness to be always open for a dialogue with all students, which we have always been. Let's work towards resolution, instead of confrontation. Let's together build bridges than walls in this university," the VC added.