By YKA Staff:
The country has slid into questionable times. Times when words like ‘nationalism’ and ‘anti-nationalism’ are being given scary definitions. Definitions that create divides rather than unite.
Caught in this ugly and mindless battle currently is what has always been considered one of India’s most prestigious universities, that has had an envious legacy along with the ups and downs of any university that has students of all pasts and ideologies.
After what has now come to be known as the ‘Afzal Guru Event’ in TV media, Jawaharlal Nehru University and its students are being branded as ‘anti-national’ and a ‘threat to the nation’ without even a second look at the facts of the case.
And why would one see facts when there are ready ‘sentiments’ that one can ‘hurt’ easily and unleash a propaganda war against those who dissent against you.
There are always two sides to a story, and just because you haven’t heard the other side doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Manira Chaudhary from Youth Ki Awaaz shot this exclusive video that brings to you that other side.
This is the story of JNU that you won’t see at prime time on Newshour. But before you watch it, here are a few quick answers to questions that you might have and we believe you should hear the answer to, so that you may watch the video with an open mind:
Who really were the people chanting anti-India slogans and was Kanhaiya Kumar present at the venue?
Nobody is sure of their identity and even the police has been unable to identify those seen in the video. The JNU student union members have categorically denied their involvement in the incident and while Kanhaiya Kumar was present at the venue, he was one among those trying to diffuse the situation that was clearly being orchestrated by unruly elements.
How can ‘Anti-India’ slogans be justified?
No one is justifying it. The JNU students themselves have clearly stated that that is not the politics they follow and neither do they adhere to such sentiments. But, they are also against the system where raising questions and expressing opinions can be branded as anti-national and invite violence.
Should the police have been called in?
No. It’s a clear case of overreaction and denying the university and the students to settle their internal matter.
Do the sedition charges against Kanhaiya Kumar stand?
No. Legal stalwarts from former Attorney General of India, Mr. Soli Sorabjee to distinguished Indian constitutional jurist and a senior Supreme Court advocate Fali S. Nariman have given statements that the charge doesn’t stand. Besides, there have been reports that there is no concrete evidence against Kanhaiya Kumar. However, on 17th February 2016, after Kanhaiya Kumar’s court appearance, he was sentenced to 14-day judicial custody.
Is it fair to brand the whole university ‘anti-national’ because of a few students’ questionable sloganeering?
Absolutely not. Since the video in question went viral, JNU students have been harassed and discriminated against outside the premises of the campus.
Is it justified for lawyers and the police to beat up anyone who “looks like” they are from JNU?
You tell us. And if you think it is, make sure you double check the mirror every time you step out of the house from now on.
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