Current and former JNU students, named in the 2016 sedition case chargesheet filed by the Delhi Police Monday, alleged that it was “politically motivated” to rake up the issue just three months before the general elections.
Former JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar and ex-students Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya have been named as the main accused.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Kumar said, “This chargesheet has come just before the election. All over the country, there is simmering anger against the government, which is under pressure from the public… Opposition parties are coming together to defeat the BJP government… To target this unity, the BJP is pressing all buttons… in panic mode.”
“The case has been politically motivated from the start. This was BJP-RSS’ plan. We were demanding that a chargesheet be filed quickly, and we thank them for finally doing it. We now demand a speedy trial so that doodh ka doodh aur paani ka paani ho jaye (things become clear),” he said.
In a joint statement, Khalid and Bhattacharya said, “We reject the charges and will contest them legally… We are convinced about our innocence, and have full faith in the court…”
Former JNUSU vice-president Shehla Rashid and Aparajitha Raja, daughter of CPI leader D Raja, who have also been named in the chargesheet, but whose direct involvement could not be established by the police, also concurred.
“This is a completely bogus case; if it had gone to trial by now, everyone would have been acquitted. But the government is stalling it to reap the political dividends in installments…,” Rashid told The Indian Express.
Aparajitha Raja also said it was a “cooked-up” case and that “the timing of the chargesheet shows the sheer desperation of the government”.
D Raja added, “These are politically motivated charges against Kumar and other student activists. We will fight it legally in court and politically outside…”
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