At least 40 Aam Aadmi Party workers, including senior leader Kanu Kalsariya, were today detained by police for protesting outside the Gujarat High Court before the hearing of a case challenging an order of CIC regarding academic degrees of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “We have detained around 40 Aam Aadmi Party workers, including Kalsariya, for protesting outside the high court. They will be released later,” Sola police inspector D V Rana said.
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A case pertaining to the degrees obtained by Modi while studying at Gujarat University has been listed for hearing today in the high court.The petition in this regard was filed by Gujarat University against the order of the Central Information Commission (CIC) on the degrees earned by Modi.
Earlier in July this year, the Gujarat High Court had issued a stay on the CIC’s order asking Gujarat University (GU) to provide information on degrees earned by Modi to Delhi Chief Minister and AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal.
Gujarat AAP unit media coordinator Harshil Nayak said their party workers were detained while raising slogans. “Since there was a hearing of a case related to Modi’s degrees, AAP workers, led by our Saurashtra zone in-charge Kanu Kalsariya, staged protest outside the high court,” Nayak said.
On April 29, the CIC had directed Delhi University and Gujarat University to provide information to Kejriwal on degrees earned by Modi in 1978 (graduation in DU) and 1983 (post-graduation in GU). The CIC’s order had come a day after Kejriwal had written a letter to Information Commissioner M Sridhar Acharyulu, saying he does not object to government records about him being made public and wondered why the Commission wants to “hide” information on Modi’s educational degree.
The Information Commissioner had treated Kejriwal’s letter as an RTI application and passed the order. Soon after the CIC issued the directive, GU Vice Chancellor M N Patel had informed the media that Modi completed his Master of Arts (MA) in Political Science as an external candidate in 1983 with first class.
However, Patel had expressed inability to share the same details under the RTI Act citing technical grounds. According to Patel, details of marks can only be provided to the candidate himself. He further claimed that the varsity does not provide details of records beyond 20 years.
Later in June, GU approached the high court demanding a stay on the CIC’s order.