IIT-Madras director Bhaskar Ramamurthi has been summoned by the HRD Ministry in connection to the suicide of the institution's student Fatima Latheef. The Director will be appearing before the ministry's higher education department officials and submit a detailed report on the case on Tuesday.
On November 9, a 19-year-old Fathima Latheef allegedly committed suicide and was found hanging from her hostel room's ceiling fan. According to reports, no suicide note was found at the site, however, a professor's name along with a few others was mentioned in Fatima's mobile phone's notes. Sources reveal Fatima and the professor had an argument over Fatima's internal marks.
Several students of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras on Friday staged a protest demanding justice for Fathima Latheef. The protest, led by the Students Federation of India (SFI), called for the arrest of the professors named in her suicide note, the protestors also demanded swift action by the police.
Fathima's father Abdul Latheef met the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami on Friday. Her father said that the Chief Minister assured to catch the culprits and punish them.
“The Chief Minister has promised that the culprits behind Fathima’s death will be caught and punished,” he said, after meeting the Chief Minister. According to reports, Fathima's father also met DMK president MK Stalin at the party’s headquarters.
Expressing his distraught, Fathima's father, while speaking to media, said that his daughter had written about the harassment she faced from the professor in detail but the police haven’t mentioned in that in the FIR.
" Fathima has told me about the harassment she faced in IIT. On November 8, she had cried for an hour in the canteen,” he said.
Meanwhile, IIT Madras said that it is ‘committed to do whatever is required as per law and ensure fair-play'. “The social media trolling of the institute, faculty members and students and trial by the media is gravely demoralizing the students, faculty members and staff as well as their families, and tarnishing the reputation of one of the finest institutes in the country,” said a statement issued by the institute.