Bollywood actor Swara Bhaskar, a JNU alumnus, has written an open letter to varsity’s student Umar Khalid, who is being searched in connection with a sedition case.
Khalid is among the students, who are being looked out by police in connection with an event at JNU against hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru during which anti-national slogans were allegedly raised.
The varsity’s students’ union president Kanhaiya is in judicial custody in a sedition case over the incident.
In the letter to Khalid, Swara who studied sociology at JNU, has also questioned him for hiding from police saying, that is being taken as the most incriminating evidence of his guilt of being a terror sympathiser.
“No, you are not a terrorist Umar Khaled, you are a radical and an idiot with poor judgement of what to say where, but you do NOT deserve to be jailed, tortured or killed for that,” she said in the letter. “I am a JNU alumnus. I spent two years doing my Masters in JNU at CSSS and am now a Bollywood actress. I was never a member of any student political party in JNU though I voted Left. I scoffed and chatted with friends about how silly Democratic Students Union (with which Khalid was formerly associated) still was.
“That was until Kanhaiya was arrested and you and six or seven others went underground, everyone got slapped with sedition charges and the public discourse in this country erupted into the most emotive and also most polemical discussion about patriotism and sedition,” she added.
Swara said she was not even thinking about Khaled as she was focused on freeing Kanhaiya by “waging my little Facebook-Twitter war” with so called patriots but she started worrying when TV news started linking him to a terrorist organisation.
“This discomfiture expanded steadily in the coming days as I began to see your name flashing everywhere as the runaway TERRORIST. Your family, I’m sorry to tell you, is being harassed. Your parents and sisters are being threatened in diverse ways....,”
The “Tanu Weds Manu” star wrote. “Why did you go into hiding and not surrender to the police? You know that is being taken as the most incriminating evidence of your guilt of being a terror sympathiser, if not a terrorist, right?,” she added.
Swara also participated in a solidarity march for JNU students at Jantar Mantar last week.