Even as protests in JNU (Jawaharlal University) continue, leaders of Left parties and JD(U) met Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Delhi to demand the release of JNU students union president Kanhaiya Kumar.
Kumar, member of CPI’s student wing AISF, was arrested on charges of sedition on Friday evening and sent to 3 days’ police custody. Ruckus at the Jawaharlal University began when a group of students protested against the government for hanging Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru and shouted anti-national slogans.
The JNU protests have sparked a massive political controversy. Left leaders have alleged that Kumar was wrongly arrested as he was not part of the Afzal Guru anniversary event.
“We met the Home Minister and apprised him about the tense atmosphere in JNU at present. Delhi Police has released a list of 20 students in connection with the event, which also includes D Raja’s daughter, but we are asking are they seen in the video shouting slogans?,” CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury told reporters after the meeting.
“They were present because they are members of students union or groups but that does not mean they were involved in it. We have demanded that Kanhaiya be released and the Home Minister has assured us that no action will be taken against any innocent student,” he added.
Rajnath Singh, however, assured the leaders that innocent students will not be harassed but the guilty will not be spared.
“No question of harassment of students. But the guilty will not be spared,” Rajnath said.
CPI General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, CPI National Secretary D Raja and JD(U) spokesperson KC Tyagi, have alleged that the new Vice Chancellor of the University was acting on the instructions of the government and allowed the police to go ahead with a “crackdown”.
“This is happening across all universities that VCs are being removed and the government is appointing persons who are then acting on their instructions,” Yechury alleged.
“This is a very serious matter and the way all students are being branded anti-national, we have raised all the issues with Rajnath Singh,” he added.
Meanwhile, Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi said the Delhi Police is firmly committed to rule of law and will ensure that no innocent suffers.
“No innocent shall suffer. DP is firmly committed to the rule of law and does not entertain any malice towards anyone,” Bassi said on twitter.
(With inputs from PTI)