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Eye on Delhi: HC postpones Kanhaiya trial to Monday, while Vemula issue dominates fractious Day 2 of Budget Session

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday postponed the bail plea hearing of JNU Student Union president Kanhaiya Kumar, arrested on sedition charges to Monday. The Delhi Police told Justice Pratibha Rani that they are moving remand application to seek Kanhaiya's police remand which is required to confront him with JNU students Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, who surrendered on Tuesday night.

Kanhaiya Kumar. PTI

Kanhaiya Kumar. PTI

Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien on adjourned the house for till 12 pm following an uproar over Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula's suicide issue. As soon as House proceedings started, Bahujan Samaj Party MP Mayawati raised Rohith Vemula issue and demanded the resignation of HRD minister Smriti Irani. Sitaram Yechury also stepped in saying that Mayawati was only asking whether the inquiry committee (to probe the Rohith Vemula suicide case) will include a Dalit member or not.

Other BSP MPs started sloganeering against the Central government and demanded justice for Vemula's family. Responding to the disruption, Irani shot back saying that the government was ready for a debate. She also alleged that the Opposition is using "a dead child to play politics".

The Delhi High Court deferred Kanhaiya's hearing till Monday after his advocates Kapil Sibal and Rebecca John asked the court to postpone the hearing, as they will oppose the police remand application. The police said that Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya surrendered on Tuesday night, following which they were taken into custody safely. They added that following the duo's surrender, the cops needed to get Kanhaiya in police custody.

Kanhaiya is in judicial custody that will expire on 2 March.

Khalid and Bhattacharya were arrested in the wee hours of Wednesday after being questioned for five hours.

"Before being arrested they were questioned for at least five hours in which the police enquired about their whereabouts and hideouts during the phase when police was looking out for them in connection with the sedition case which led to arrest of JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar," a senior police official said.

The police also enquired whether two of them were the main organisers of the 9 February event against the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, and whether they were involved in anti-India sloganeering which allegedly took place.

The police official, added, that the force is waiting for three more students to surrender.

The duo, who returned to the JNU campus last Sunday after having gone missing since 12 February, drove from the administrative block to the main gate of the university, got into a Delhi Police vehicle and were taken to an undisclosed
destination last night.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Feb 24, 2016 12:24 PM

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