Replies to probe panel’s notices will decide fate of 21 JNU students | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Replies to probe panel’s notices will decide fate of 21 JNU students

The notices were sent to them on the recommendations by an internal inquiry committee that probed the February 9 event on JNU campus at which alleged anti-national slogans were shouted.

delhi Updated: Mar 16, 2016 09:49 IST
HT Correspondent
JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar with the union Vice President Shehla Rashid (L) and Rama Naga (R) who is facing sedition charges, addresses a news conference at the JNU campus in New Delhi on Friday.
JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar with the union Vice President Shehla Rashid (L) and Rama Naga (R) who is facing sedition charges, addresses a news conference at the JNU campus in New Delhi on Friday.(PTI)

Charges ranging from blocking traffic to inciting communal passions have been made against 21 JNU students in show cause notices issued by the university.

The notices were sent to them on the recommendations by an internal inquiry committee that probed the February 9 event on JNU campus at which alleged anti-national slogans were shouted.

The students are in a fix as they have only time till Wednesday morning to reply to the notice. They claim that the notice does not clearly spell out the charges against them.

The response to the notice will decide the punishment given to the students, a university official said. Among the punishments suggested by the five-member panel led by a professor, are imposing fines to rustication for a semester.

A senior JNU official hinted that Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya – both charged with sedition – may be rusticated. Both Khalid and Bhattacharya are currently in jail. It was alleged that they were part of the group that organized the February 9 event in support of parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.

The notice has also been sent to the JNUSU joint secretary Saurabh Sharma, a member of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP). It was Sharma who complained against the event to the university.

Sharma has been charged with “blocking or forceful prevention of normal movement of traffic” and “violation of security safety rules” as notified by the university.

JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar, general secretary Rama Naga, former JNUSU president Ashutosh Kumar, JNUSU vice-president Anant Prakash Narayan and joint secretary Chintu Kumari are among others who have been issued notices.

The notice to Anirban says he is guilty of “arousing communal, caste or regional feelings or creating disharmony among students”. A copy of the show cause notice sent to Bhattacharya through the deputy inspector general (prison), Tihar Jail, is in possession of the Hindustan Times. Similar charges have also been leveled against Khalid and Ashutosh, university sources said.

Students, however, are confused how to frame their response.

“The show cause notice neither specifies charges nor punishment. On what basis then should we send our explanation? This committee was only formed to punish us. We do not believe in this committee,” Anant Prakash Narayan, one of the 21 students who have received the notice, told HT.