In a new twist to the ongoing saga involving the battle of ideologies in Jawaharlal Nehru University and its spillover into national politics and riots at Patiala House courts in Delhi, the Supreme Court will hear a petition on the subject tomorrow.
The SC has agreed to hear the petition by an ex-student of the JNU, who wants the court to intervene in the whole matter.
The Patiala House court complex in Delhi, which hears most of the initial court matters in New Delhi, saw riot-like atmosphere yesterday after a group of people wearing lawyers’ uniform tried to throw out journalists and the students and staff of the JNU from the court-room where the university’s students union president was to be produced in a case of sedition.
The central government has charged Kanhaiya Kumar with sedition after some unknown persons were videographed raising slogans such as Pakistan Zindabad, Afzal Guru zindabad and so on at an event organized under, or with the help of, left-leaning student bodies on the campus.
Kumar belongs to the All India Students Federation, the student wing of the Communist Party of India.
BJP’s own Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishat (All India Student Council) complained against the sloganeering to a BJP member of parliament, who in turn complained to the Home Minister.
The Home Ministry arrested the student leader alleging that he too was seen chanting anti-India slogans.
The police is examining all the video footage it can get to gather evidence against the arrested students.
However, Delhi Police has not been able to arrest or trace the students who were clearly seen in the video chanting the slogans. They are known to belong to another student political body, and are currently absconding.
The Supreme Court has, fifty years ago, ruled that mere chanting of anti-India slogans will not constitute sedition unless it is accompanied by violence or a direct incitement to violence.
Meanwhile, journalists took out a procession today against the violence committed by lawyers (or people dressed like advocates) against them in Patiala House.