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JNU Row: Umar, Anirban Finally out on Bail But…

The other two JNU students — Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya — who were charged for sedition by Delhi Police amid national acrimony against the highhanded charges over students, were granted bail today but back home at JNU an equally acrimonious situation awaits them.

The over-enthusiastic administration that is eager to serve the wishes of the ministry for funds and existence has turned the guns on 8 students to begin with among the 21 and they are facing rustication charges.

Umar Khalid is facing charges for organising the event to mark the anniversary of the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, which turned ugly when the group clashed with ABVP and ended in raising allegedly "anti-India" slogans.

The defence lawyers argued that the two student leaders were actually handling the crowd which raised anti-India slogans. The defence also produced 10 eyewitnesses who have sought permission from the university authorities for the event, finalised the posters and got them printed.

Umar Khalid’s lawyers also argued that being a doctorate student, he has only 6 months left for submission of his thesis. While the court granted them the bail, back in the campus the situation has turned hostile with the administration flexing its muscles on 21 students and serving them show-cause notices, including the two who were granted bail by the court.

The JNU row has grown from mere a campus-based issue to a bigger national debate and brought India under scrutiny of many global human rights organizations, including the Latin American political scientist Chomsky.

Now the country’s intellectual centre (JNU) is pitted against BJP, which is hoping to turn the universities into pro-ABVP centres and enhance its leverage on them in future. In the process, even the national media and intellectuals have turned the tide against the BJP-ruled government.

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