Andhra Pradesh have claimed to have foiled a CPI (Maoist) plot to kill University of Hyderabad vice-chancellor Dr Podile Appa Rao by arresting two former students of the university on Friday.
According to a release issued on Saturday, the duo were nabbed at Pitchukulapadu T Junction on Bhadrachalam- Cherla road while they were returning from Bastar forests after meeting Yapa Narayana alias Haribhushan, secretary of the Telangana State Committee of CPI (Maoist). The police said the duo were tasked to kill the Vice-Chancellor as there was “antagonism” among students against him ever since Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula committed suicide. Killing Rao would have helped the CPI (Maoist) attract students of the university, said police.
Those arrested are Ankala Prudviraj (27), from Krishna district, and Chandan Kumar Mishra (28), from Howrah in West Bengal. The two are former students of the University of Hyderabad, and were attracted towards the Marxist-Leninist-Maoist ideology, said police. Prudviraj, they said, has earlier been arrested after he was caught accompanying a woman believed to be the wife of Maoist leader Pulluri Prasada Rao alias Chandranna. He was jailed for sometime and then released on bail. Prudviraj was also a member of student outfit Telangana Vidyarthi Vedika, said police.
Mishra joined the university in 2013 for a postgraduate course. He was a member of Telangana Praja Front and SFI.
Police said Mishra met Haribhushan in December through another person in Telangana Vidya Vedika, said police. In January, Prudviraj and Mishra met Haribhushan in a forest between Cherla and Venkatapuram areas with the help of a Maoist courier, they added. During discussions about the UoH campus, the suicide of Vemula came up and they decided that if the V-C was killed “in the name of Maoist party”, there was a possibility of attracting many students, police said.
On Friday, police said, Haribhushan told the duo that the time was ripe to kill the V-C and gave them letterheads to drop around after they commit the act. While they were returning, they were arrested, police said.