On January 17th 2016, Rohith Vemula committed suicide. He left a note behind saying he did so because of the problems he was facing in the institute he was studying in, by the virtue of being from a particular caste. With his demise, a wave of protests swept across the country. The state tried to, and succeeded in, suppressing a lot of them.

Amongst these was a candlelight vigil was organised at India Gate in Rohith's memory, led by his mother and attended by students from all over, including a contingent from University of Hyderabad. Surprisingly, the state did not allow this peaceful vigil too. All the attendees, including Rohith's mother, were detained by the police and taken away to nearby police stations in DTC buses, which were marked ’00 Special Service’.

This piece is a reflection on the series of the evening's events, symbolically trying to light the candle that wasn’t lit on that day.

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Rohit Iyer Plus

Films by the students of the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad

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