Release our Bihar boy Kanhaiya: Shatrughan Sinha on JNU row

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 17, 2016 11:13 IST
Shatrughan Sinha demands the release of JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar, who is facing sedition charges. (PTI)

BJP parliamentarian Shatrughan Sinha called for the release on Wednesday of JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar, who is facing sedition charges for allegedly shouting anti-India slogans, amid a raging row over the arrests and right-wing violence.

The actor-turned-politician, who has been critical of the BJP in the past, said Kumar said nothing anti-national, contradicting his party’s stand on the issue.

“Have heard transcript of speech of Kanhaiya, our Bihar boy president of JNUSU. He has said nothing anti national or against Constitution,” the Patna Sahib MP tweeted.

“Hope wish and pray that he’s release soon, sooner the better.”

Sinha also defended the reputation of Jawaharlal Nehru University, which has been attacked by Hindu and right-wing groups in the past week, saying it was an institution of “international repute, enviable record and history”.

“It is a seat of learning for some of India’s brightest young minds & also some very respectable teachers. Save it from further embarrassment,” he tweeted.

He also appeared to criticise political leaders who have leveled allegations of anti-national activities on JNU that has been tense following a February 9 event to commemorate 2001 Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, where anti-national slogans were chanted.

“We need to be very cautious while making sweeping statements maligning an institution. They are our own children and our own students,” Sinha tweeted.

“If students, teachers or politicians make accusations, they need to be prepared to substantiate them with hard facts that they can stand by.”

The sulking MP has been severely critical of the party in recent months, hitting out at the Prime Minister’s “advisers” after President’s Rule was imposed in Arunachal Pradesh. He also publicly wanted responsibility to be fixed after the BJP crashed to a defeat in the Bihar polls last year.

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