August 27, 2016 5:00:13 am
A DELHI sessions court Friday granted regular bail to Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) president Kanhaiya Kumar and two other students, who have been accused of sedition for raising anti-national slogans during an event at the JNU campus in February this year.
Observing that Kumar, Anirban Bhattacharya and Umar Khalid were on interim bail and had “joined the investigation as and when called”, Additional Sessions Judge Reetesh Singh said, “I admit all these accused persons i.e. Kanhaiya Kumar, Anirban Bhattacharya and Umar Khalid to regular bail on the same terms and conditions on which they were granted interim bail.”
The court added that existing bail bonds and sureties furnished by the trio at the time of interim bail will remain in force till further orders.
Arguing for the Special Cell of Delhi Police, Special Public Prosecutor Rajiv Mohan told the court that Kumar, Bhattacharya and Khalid had “cooperated” with police in the investigation and had not flouted any of the conditions of their interim bail.
Mohan also sought that certain conditions be imposed on the students as investigation was still underway.
All three students, who are out on interim bail, had moved the trial court for regular bail. Kumar moved the sessions court after the Delhi High Court on August 17 refused his application for regular bail and asked him to move a regular court. The HC had granted him interim bail on March 2 for six months, which is scheduled to expire on September 1.
While granting interim bail, the bench of Justice Pratibha Rani had held that “the thoughts reflected in the slogans raised by some of the students of JNU who organised and participated in that programme cannot be claimed to be protected as fundamental right to freedom of speech and expression”, and that the court would “consider this as a kind of infection which needs to be controlled/cured before it becomes an epidemic”.
“Whenever some infection is spread in a limb,” the court said, “effort is made to cure the same by giving antibiotics orally and if that does not work, by following second line of treatment. Sometimes it may require surgical intervention also. However, if the infection results in infecting the limb to the extent that it becomes gangrene, amputation is the only treatment.”
While Kumar and the other students did not appear in court, tight security was in place both outside and inside the premises to restrain any untoward activity.
Asserting that Kumar did not raise any slogan which would fall under the ambit of Section 124A of IPC (sedition), his bail application says that JNU premises have “remained calm” and “not a single incident of violence” or “any sort of disturbance” was reported from within or outside the premises. It added that Kumar is a “victim of a politically motivated conspiracy”, where “certain vested elements have sought to fabricate evidence against him”.
“A subsequent doctored video has been circulated on the internet and aired by some television news media, which seeks to superimpose/overlay utterances that may have been made elsewhere by others, on his voice, in an attempt to attribute such utterances to him,” stated the application.
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