A contempt petition has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking action against those JNU students, including student leader Kanhaiya Kumar, who allegedly raised anti-India slogans during an event and also condemned the judiciary for the hanging of 2001 Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.
Filed by a lawyer, the petition was mentioned on Friday before the court of Chief Justice TS Thakur. Advocate JP Dhanda, petitioner’s counsel, urged the bench to hear the petition on February 22, which was declined.
Dhanda told the court the matter should be heard soon because the protests had spread all over the country and students of various universities were out on the streets. On his insistence, the court agreed to hear the matter next week but did not specify the date.
The event was organised by a group of Jawaharlal Nehru University students, including Kumar and Umar Khalid, a former Democratic Students Union (DSU) member and the main organiser of the event on February 9.
Kanhaiya was arrested on February 11 after police registered a case of sedition and criminal conspiracy against him and he was remanded to police custody for three days on February 12. On February 17, the metropolitan magistrate sent him to 14 days judicial custody.
Kumar had moved the apex court seeking bail on Thursday, claiming a threat to his life in Tihar Jail. He was directed by the SC to move Delhi high court.
The petitioner has also sought the initiation of contempt proceedings against former DU professor SAR Geelani who too has been arrested on sedition charges for arranging an event at a city convention centre as a mark to protest Guru’s hanging.
The petition states the students have crossed every limit of freedom of speech and expression by the calling the Epitome of Justice as judicial killers (Hon’ble Supreme Court judges). It says the top court had upheld Guru’s conviction and sent him to the gallows. He was hanged at the top court’s direction.
It said the main topic of the so-called “cultural event” organised inside the university was judicial killing of Guru which outright tantamount to criminal contempt because those involved in it projected the SC judges as killers.
One of the participants, Umar Khalid, has even gone to the extent of calling the judgement against Afzal as “shameless”, it said.
“The young generation who is looked upon as becoming the future of our country by this incident has crossed all the limits and misused the Fundamental Right of Freedom to speech and Expression,” the petition read.