- Raja Ram Yadav was speaking at a college function in Ghazipur
- He said, "If you're a student and get into a fight beat, murder"
- Policeman was killed in a mob violence in the same district on Saturday
The Vice-Chancellor of Purvanchal University has waded into controversy after remarks that appeared to encourage students to get into fights and even commit murders. As National Conference chief Omar Abdullah targeted the BJP, Uttar Pradesh minister Siddharth Nath Singh recommended action against Raja Ram Yadav, saying a vice-chancellor of "such mentality has no right to stay in his position".
"I have asked the vice-chancellor to give his version of the story," UP Deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma, who also holds the higher education portfolio, told news agency PTI.
At a college function in Ghazipur on Saturday, Raja Ram Yadav said, "If you're a student of this University, never come crying to me. If you ever get into a fight, beat them, if possible murder them, we'll take care of it later".
Ghazipur was where a police constable Suresh Vats was killed by a mob, allegedly belonging to the Nishad Party, the same evening.
Raja Ram Yadav was a professor of the Allahabad University, who was appointed the vice-chancellor of Purvanchal University -- which has 350 affiliated colleges -- in April 2017. In October, he faced criticisms of saffronisation after a Ram Katha was organised inside the university premises in October.
National Conference chief Omar Abdullah tweeted:
Get in to a fight, commit a murder as a result and this university VC will take care of things. This is what passes for an education in some places these days. Not surprisingly the audience even applauds his assertion. https://t.co/E8tI097uzNOmar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) December 30, 2018
This afternoon, Siddharth Nath Singh said, "It was wrong, he can't make such comments. He should teach students the way of peace but he's doing 'gunda raj'... A vice chancellor of such mentality has no right to stay in his position. I hope Deputy Chief Minister will take appropriate action," reported news agency ANI.
On December 3, another police officer, inspector Subodh Kumar Singh, was shot dead in Bulandshahr after a mob went berserk when carcasses of several cows were found in the outskirts of a village. The attackers had had used stones, sticks to hit him and chopped off his fingers with an axe before shooting him.
Several BJP leaders said the killings are "isolated incidents". Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath called the killings a "political conspiracy".
Flagging the law and order in the state, the Congress and Mayawati have alleged that a "jungle raj" is running in Uttar Pradesh.
Over the last months, several instances of mob violence following reports of cattle slaughter have been reported from the state.
"People tell me miscreants prefer to stay behind bars, they are afraid of coming out," Union minister Piyush Goyal was quoted as saying by ANI. "This kind of situation has been seen for first time. It is unfortunate that the Bulandshahr and Ghazipur incidents happened... some elements are trying to disturb the environment," he added.