Former Jawaharlal Nehru University Student Union president Kanhaiya Kumar and two other former students Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya can be tried for treason, as the Delhi government has approved the prosecution according to Delhi Police. Earlier, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said that a decision would be taken soon on the sanction needed to run a case of treason.
Earlier, on 19 February, the Patiala House Court of Delhi had sought a status report from the Delhi government in this matter. The court had said that by 3 April, the Delhi government should file its status report. The court had asked Delhi Police to send a reminder to the Delhi government to sanction the case.
BJP’s Nandkishore Garg had filed a petition in the Delhi High Court alleging that the Kejriwal government was not approving of the case of sedition against Kanhaiya Kumar his accomplices. The high court rejected the petition, saying that the Delhi government had to take a decision on the basis of rules and law.
Thereafter, Garg filed moved the Supreme Court, which rejected the petition too. The court left the decision on the matter to the Delhi government.
The BJP raised the issue in the 2020 Delhi assembly election campaign. The party alleged that the Delhi government was not giving permission to prosecute the accused. It accused the AAP of supporting the “tukde-tukde” gang. The AAP denied the charge.
The case pertains to the incident in the JNU on 9 February 2016 when seditious slogans were raised inside the varsity campus. Kanhaiya Kumar and others, including former JNU students Anirban and Umar Khalid, were accused of supporting the anti-India slogans and joining the separatists.
Some communist students of JNU had invited Kashmiri separatists to the campus at the behest of Kanhaiya Kumar and gang. The campus that day reverberated with slogans like “Bharat tere tukde honge, Insha’Allah!” Thereon, these communist student union leaders began to be referred to as the “tukde-tukde gang”.
Delhi Police had filed a charge sheet against Kanhaiya and others on 14 January 14 last year. The 1,200-page charge sheet included the names of 36 students, including Kanhaiya Kumar, Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya. The Delhi government had not allowed the students to be prosecuted back then.