Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) president Kanhaiya Kumar, arrested on charges of sedition, was subjected to “psychological pressure” during questioning, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has said in its inquiry report.
The report also pulled up Delhi Police for “serious dereliction of duty” and said it “did not do anything to prevent the assault” on Kumar inside the Patiala House Court premises Wednesday or “apprehend the attackers”.
The report, which said the assault “appears to be organised and pre-planned”, has been forwarded to the Chief Justice of India (CJI), said sources.
“… He was subjected to psychological pressure during interrogation. The statement, which was issued by police as an appeal on behalf of Kanhaiya Kumar, was not written by him voluntarily. The content, construction and framework of the statement were as dictated by the police,” it said.
On the attack on Kumar inside Patiala House Court premises, the NHRC said the student leader was “abused and physically assaulted” by some persons dressed as advocates.
“… He was even physically assaulted inside the adjoining courtroom in the presence of police, who did not do anything to prevent the assault or apprehend the attackers, even though they were identified by Kanhaiya then and there. The… assault on Kanhaiya in the court premises appears to be organised and pre- planned,” stated the report.
It added, “What happened in the Patiala House Court Complex on February 17 was a major security lapse on the part of the police. There was serious dereliction of duty on the part of the police. Going by the sequence of events, the safety and security of Kanhaiya and his family members is a serious cause of concern.”
The report has also been forwarded to the Delhi police commissioner and the director general of prisons, Tihar Jail, and directed them to submit their replies by February 26.
The findings of the report were submitted by the NHRC team, comprising C K Chaturvedi, registrar (law) and S K Jain, senior superintendent of police (investigation), after their visit to Tihar Jail, where Kanhaiya has been remanded to judicial custody for 14 days.