Three office-bearers of JNU unit of ABVP on Wednesday resigned from the student wing of the BJP, strongly protesting against the Centre's handling of the raging row at the premier university and "legitimising" actions of right wing fascist forces even as JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar was first "badly beaten up" and then transported with utmost care to Tihar Jail where he will remain for 14 days in connection with a 'sedition' case.
JNU students are on strike demanding release of JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar while Delhi police continue to hunt the sedition suspects. The Supreme Court made Delhi Police Commissioner BS Bassi personally responsible for his safety after being told that he was "badly beaten up" while being brought to court premises. More and more voices have begun rising against the 'sedition' storyline, and now with the ABVP revolt, there are serious doubts about who are the folks who raised anti-national slogans and why the government rushed in.
Several journalists were again beaten up by a section of lawyers at the Patiala House Court - much like what happened on Monday - before Kanhaiya was brought there.
Pradeep Narwal, Joint Secretary of JNU unit of ABVP, said he has quit the party. Rahul Yadav, President of ABVP unit of JNU's School of Social Sciences (SSS) and its Secretary Ankit Hans have all said they have quit. A sample of the retweets from the ABVP Twitter account has a clear theme especially over the last 15 hours - revolting voices against "campus politics." Narwal posted once again at 1 am IST on his Facebook page confirming that the news is true."No one hacked my account, it was me who posted that. Jisne galat kiya, jinhoone galat slogan lagaye (anti India) should be given punishment as per the law not whole JNU student community," he said.
The Times of India reports on how the ABVP revolt has pointed to "veiled persons shouting anti national slogans" during the protest which sparked off government action.
In fact, the Kanhaiya Kumar speech video posted on Firstpost has now found its way back into the debate across media, and most are asking the same question: Is this sedition? Writing in The Indian Express, eminent lawyer Fali Nariman has said "mere expressions of hate, and even contempt for one’s government, are not sedition. When a person is dubbed “anti-Indian”, it is distasteful to India’s citizenry, but then to be “anti-Indian” is not a criminal offence, and it is definitely not “sedition”. (It only means that you are a freak, and that it is high time to have your head examined!).
In a joint statement, the three leaders said have decided to quit ABVP as they have serious differences over the way the NDA government was handling the issue, adding there is a difference between "interrogation and crushing ideology and branding entire Left as anti-national."
They also expressed deep anguish over assault on mediapersons and JNU students and teachers in Patiala House Court complex on Monday as well as attack on JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar in the same court complex on Wednesday, alleging that the government was "legitimising" the action of right wing fascist forces. Left or right wing, sedition or not is among the four questions that the world media is asking too.
"We are resigning from ABVP and disassociating ourselves from any further activity of the party as per our difference of opinion over the current JNU incident and long standing difference of opinion with MANUSMIRITI and Rohith Vermula incident (sic).
"Anti-national slogans on February 9 in university campus were very unfortunate and heart breaking. Whosoever responsible for that act must be punished as per the law but the way NDA government is tackling the whole issue, the oppression on professors, repeated attacks on media by lawyers and Kanhaiya Kumar in court premises (today) is unjustifiable," the statement said.
When contacted, a senior ABVP leader said the organisation has not received their resignation.
The three students further said, "We think there is a difference between interrogation and crushing ideology and branding entire left as anti-national. We cannot be mouthpiece of such a government which has unleashed oppression on student community.
"Every day we see people assemble at front gate with Indian Flag to beat JNU student, well this is hooliganism not nationalism, you can’t do anything in the name of nation, there is a difference between nationalism and hooliganism," it added.
The JNU students are on strike demanding release of JNUSU President Kumar. He was arrested on Friday last in connection with a case of sedition and criminal conspiracy registered over holding of the event at the varsity during which anti-India slogans were alleged to have been raised.
Members of the ABVP had objected to holding of the event following which Vice Chancellor had withdrawn the permission for it. However, the organisers had gone ahead with the event.
Full text of Pradeep Narwal's letter:
We, Pradeep, Joint Secretary, ABVP JNU UNIT, Rahul Yadav, President SSS ABVP UNIT and Ankit Hans, Secretary SSS ABVP UNIT resigning from ABVP and disassociating ourselves from any further activity of ABVP as per our difference of opinion due to the following reasons:
1. Current JNU incident.
2. Long standing difference of opinion with party on MANUSMIRITI and Rohith Vermula incident.
Anti-national slogans on Feb. 9 in university campus were very unfortunate and heart breaking. Whosoever responsible for that act must be punished as per the law but the way NDA government tackling the whole issue, the oppression on Professors, repeated lawyer attacks on Media and Kanhaiya kumar in court premises is unjustifiable and we think there is a difference between interrogation and crushing ideology and branding entire left as Anti-national.
People are circulating #SHUTDOWNJNU but I think they must circulate #SHUTDOWNZEENEWS which has demeaned this world class institution, this biased ZEE news media generalize and related the act done by few people to the whole student community of JNU. JNU is considered as one of the progressive and democratic institution where we can see intermingling of people from lower to upper income strata of the society, notion of equality.
We can’t be mouthpiece of such a govt. which has unleashed oppression on student community, legislature like O P Sharma, govt. which has legitimized the action of right wing fascist forces either in Patiala house court or in front of JNU north gate. Every day we see people assemble at front gate with Indian Flag to beat JNU student, well this is hooliganism not nationalism, you can’t do anything in the name of nation, there is a difference between nationalism and hooliganism.
Anti-India slogans can’t be tolerated in campus or any part of country, JNUSU& some left organization are saying that nothing has happened in the campus but here we want to stress that veiled persons in the event organized by former DSU persons shouted slogans BHARAT TERE TUKADDE HONGE of which there is concrete evidence in videos, so we demand any person responsible for the slogans should be punished as per the law, and in this whole process we also condemn media trial which has culminated in Anti-JNU sentiments throughout the country. Today we all must stand together to save JNU which has given us identity, we need to come across party lines to save reputation of this institution, to save future of JNUites as more than 80% of students don’t belong to any political party so let’s unite to save this JNU culture.
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