JNU students: ‘We have nothing to hide, open to questioning’

Five JNU students who have been charged with sedition and resurfaced back on campus after being on a run for over 10 days on Tuesday said they have nothing to hide and are open to any questioning by the police.

The students also maintained that they will not appear before the university probe panel as they have lost faith in the varsity administration.

“We have nothing to hide. We disappeared only because of security reasons as we were concerned about what happened to Kanhaiya could have happened to us as well. When we saw normalcy returning on campus, we came back,” JNUSU general secretary Rama Naga told reporters.

“We have nothing to hide. If police wants to question us they can, we are open to it but since we have not been issued summons there is no point of surrendering,” he added.

Earlier in the day, a bench of Justices B.D. Ahmed and R.K. Gauba agreed to grant urgent hearing to the plea of Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, which said that there is a threat to their lives and sought police protection while surrendering.

However, the Delhi high court refrained from giving any specific direction on granting any interim protection from their arrest, with Justice Pratibha Rani saying “let the matter be heard tomorrow”.

Mr. Khalid and Mr. Bhattacharya who were on the campus for the entire day refused to interact with the media saying their lawyers have asked them to refrain from doing so.

Ashutosh Kumar, former JNUSU president, who was also among the five students said, “We do not believe in the university’s high-level enquiry. They debarred us from academic activities even before giving us a chance to put our version. Now we will not depose before them. We have lost faith in our administration”.

Asked about why only Mr. Khalid and Mr. Bhattacharya have moved a petition and not them, Anant Prakash said, “They were among the organisers of the February event while we were just there to intervene among the two groups. However, the decision to resurface was a collective one“.

The five students — Mr. Khalid, Mr. Bhattacharya, Mr. Naga, Mr. Ashutosh Kumar and Mr. Prakash — had gone missing from the campus since February 12, 2016 after JNU students union president Mr. Kanhaiya Kumar was arrested on sedition charges for allegedly raising anti-India slogans during a controversial event at the campus.

They came back to the university campus on Sunday night.

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Printable version | May 25, 2022 11:36:39 am |