Monday, February 29, 2016

'Patently false': JNU faculty rips into the Bar Council report justifying the Patiala House attack

Full text of the statement by the Jawaharal Nehru University faculty

In a shockingly partisan statement that blatantly misrepresents events, the Bar Council of India has issued a report that justifies the well documented attacks by a mob of lawyers on Jawaharlal Nehru University students, teachers and media at Patiala House Courts over two days (February 15 and 17, 2016) as “a reaction to the incidents, which are grave in nature and very dangerous for the country”.

The Bar Council of India Joint Secretary Ashok Kumar Pandey claimed that a large number of JNU teachers and students and others had arrived at the court in three to four buses and raised slogans and used “provocative words”. This led to the untoward incident in which “both the sides took part,” said the report, adding that “any true citizen or a lawyer of India” was supposed to react strongly to the “anti-India” slogans.

We, the undersigned faculty members of Jawaharlal Nehru University, wish to set the record straight. Nine of us reached Patiala House Court No 4 between 1 and 1.15 pm on 15th February 2016 to attend the hearing on Kanhaiya Kumar’s bail plea. The sole objective of our presence there was that when Kanhaiya Kumar was produced he would see the faces of his teachers in the courtroom. At that time, a few students and other teachers of JNU, and some members of CPI, the parent organisation of Kanhaiya’s student group, were already waiting silently outside, similarly wanting him to see friendly and familiar faces when he was produced. There were about 15 to 20 of them, hardly enough to fill four cars, let alone one bus.

Initially, we (signatories to this letter) waited on the benches outside the courtroom, along with a few journalists. After the lunch break the court clerk and stenographer invited us to come into the courtroom and we were seated there even when a few lawyers, an under-trial and a policemen, etc walked in and out of the room. We were not asked by anybody at that point to leave. About fifteen minutes later, about ten to twelve men dressed in lawyer’s clothes rushed in, shouting at us to get out. 

These lawyers were led by a man whom we later recognised from the media coverage the next day as Mr Vikram Singh Chauhan. At that time we did not know who any of them were. They crowded the small room and abused us, saying that JNU teachers were anti-national and “deshdrohis”, that we were all “Pakistanis” and asking us ‘what kind of antinational education do you give your students’?

We tried to reason with them not to be abusive, and said that we had a right to be in the courtroom, but they continued to heckle us as “Pakistanis”, and told us that the seats were for lawyers alone. The police kept on just watching and did not intervene to stop them. Some of us even got up and told them that they could take our chairs and we would just stand, but they started physically trying to push us out of the courtroom. Our younger male colleague, Dr Rohit, who was standing at the back, was grabbed by his collar and dragged towards the centre of the courtroom. Chauhan said “maar do isko” and began raining blows on Rohit. 

Women faculty close to him tried to stop him physically, but the lawyers continued hurling abuses, and some of us were pushed and jostled and touched inappropriately in the process. The attempt was clearly to intimidate and harass us into leaving the courtroom, and indeed Patiala Court premises. The police and court staff kept on watching and did not intervene to stop them.

Profs Neera Kongari, Rohit, Himanshu and Janaki Nair were pushed outside the courtroom. Most of the men dressed in lawyers’ clothes rushed out after them. Extremely abusive language was used by the lawyers.

Those of us who remained inside could hear sounds of men shouting from outside, and fearing that we would be subject to even greater physical violence, five women faculty – Profs. Ayesha Kidwai, Madhu Sahni, Nivedita Menon, Susan Viswanathan, and Chitra Harshvardhan – once again sat down. A larger contingent of policemen entered the courtroom and asked us to vacate the courtroom. Some of the aggressive lawyers came back in and although we requested the police to hold them back, they did not even ask these lawyers to leave. Instead they were allowed to enter and leave the courtroom as they wished. 

We asked the police to bring us orders from the magistrate asking us to clear the courtroom and demanded to be escorted out of the building. We were told that the magistrate had given verbal orders to the police to clear the courtroom, but we insisted that we be given police protection throughout. 

When a contingent of policewomen arrived, it took the police 10 minutes to find a way to escort us out of the courtroom as the doorways and the courtyard was blocked by shouting lawyers. The police were forced to find another exit and led us to another ground floor exit but that was blocked too by shouting and screaming lawyers. We were led then up the stairs and at least two other stairwells were tried but we were led away as the police was unsure that they could get us out safely.

Other lawyers who passed us on the corridor kept up the threatening tone, saying we should all be sent to Pakistan. Finally, a safe exit into the ground floor shed where the notary publics sit, was found. The police escorted us to the gate and bundled five of us into autorickshaws as they feared that we would be assaulted even if were to walk to our cars parked in the parking lot.

JNU faculty who had been pushed outside the courtroom were completely silent, and they noted that the lawyers led by Chauhan, when finally obstructed by the police, sent in two women lawyers who also shouted abuse at the JNU faculty assembled in the courtroom. A few minutes later all the lawyers rushed out of the courtroom saying “nikal gaye” and began beating up every young person assuming they were JNU students, including a very young couple.

Later media coverage confirmed that students and the media people, as well as a CPI member, were assaulted by the mob outside.

Kanhaiya Kumar was not produced in court on that day, and when he was produced on the 17th, only one JNU faculty member was present, Prof Himanshu; in fact we were asked by Kanhaiya’s lawyers to stay away so that our presence would not create the opportunity for further violence. It was on that day, when no faculty was present, and only the same handful of JNU students and CPI activists, that Kanhaiya was physically assaulted and the media terrorised and beaten up for the second time by the same lawyers in full view of a passive police force.

So the claim of provocative slogans from “3 to 4 busloads” of JNU people rousing lawyers to physical assault is patently false.

The Bar Council report surprisingly fails to mention two crucial bits of evidence:
  1. The WhatsApp message in Hindi that was circulated over February 14-15, that clearly mobilised for the attack. The message, snapshots of which are freely available in the media, calls upon all recipients to assemble in large numbers at Patiala House on Monday 15th to “peacefully and legally” “produce befitting consequences” (anjaam tak pahunchana) for the traitors who have been conspiring in Ganga Dhaba (JNU) and,
  2. The sting operation by India Today that reveals Vikram Singh Chauhan and others boasting about their violent assaults on Kanhiaya and others.     
 From the transcript of the deposition of Kanhaiya Kumar to the Supreme Court judges’ panel after the attack on him the second day, made public on February 27th by CNN-IBN, it is also clear that the Registrar General of the High Court had been present at the time, and had asked Jatin Narwal, DCP, New Delhi, “to catch the guy” whom Kanhaiya identified as his attacker, but he failed to do so. When the DCP claims at one point that he was not in the room when Kanhaiya was attacked, the Registrar again intervenes, saying “No sir, he was inside the room along with 10-12 officers.” (Transcript available in The Indian Express of February 28, 2016).

IT is shocking that the Bar Council of India should produce such a patently false account of events that exactly matches the claims of Vikram Singh Chauhan and BJP MLA OP Sharma who led the violent mob. Even more appalling is the fact that a body that represents practising lawyers should justify physical violence on the grounds that anti-India slogans were raised, which is any case, a blatant lie.

Is the legal community now going to subvert due process and rule of law and take matters into their own hands whenever they feel their sentiments are hurt? This is particularly paradoxical given Vikram Singh Chauhan’s recent interview to The Hindu (February 27, 2016) in which he says the media has “already found him guilty”, for it seems BCI not only justifies Kanhaiya’s being “found guilty” by self-proclaimed nationalist lawyers, even before he is produced in court, but also their attack on him on the basis of their perception.

Chitra Harshvardhan
Himanshu
Ayesha Kidwai
Neera Kongari
Nivedita Menon
Janaki Nair
Rohit
Madhu Sahni
Susan Visvanathan

http://scroll.in/article/804360/patently-false-jnu-faculty-rips-into-the-bar-council-report-justifying-the-patiala-house-attack

Haryana police at work: 'Cops told us to be quiet for sake of honour': Survivors of Murthal describe their gangrape ordeal

Murthal (Sonepat): Amid continuous police denial, two victims came forward and described the ordeal they suffered on the Murthal highway on the evening of 22 February when Jat protesters — who were agitating to press the government to accept their demand for reservation in government jobs — allegedly assaulted them sexually along with several others. They also disclosed the conspiracy of silence hatched by the cops, who allegedly discouraged them from reporting the matter 'for the sake of their honour'.

Keeping in view the safety and privacy of the victims (as per their request), their locations have been withheld. “Along with my husband, I was on way back to home from Delhi when our bus was stopped by the rioters a kilometre away from Sukhdev Dhaba (a famous eatery). My husband and I, along with several others were dragged out and taken to a lonely roadside field, where I was gangraped till the time I lost consciousness. The other women in the bus met the same fate. 

When I regained consciousness, I saw some men searching for something. Despite severe pain, I kept mum and tried to hid myself thinking that they were also rioters. But some of them spotted me. They came closer to me and offered help. They reunited me with my husband, who was robbed and badly beaten by the goons. My clothes were torn. In the meantime, some policemen reached there and they arranged a vehicle for us,” the 27-year-old victim told Firstpost.

Asked why she did not file an FIR, she said the priority for her and her husband was to save themselves first and leave the place. “Even worse, we were advised by the officials there not to report the matter for the sake of honour, because what has happened could not be undone,” she added...

Read more: 

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Offer truth and hope, not drama: Teachers

The following is an open letter written by the SC/ST Teachers' Forum & Concerned Faculty, University of Hyderabad, to Union HRD minister Smriti Irani:

Dear Ms Irani,
Thanks to your stunning performance, we, many faculty members from the University of Hyderabad, are compelled to do what we should have done in the last one month or so, but could not bring ourselves to - write, write about Rohith, write about our other students, write about the state of academics, write about ourselves and write about society at large.

Our first acknowledgement to this therefore goes to you for revealing yourself and for bringing us back from grief, from reflection, from teaching and from various other mundane things we do as part of our job.  As we watched you in disbelief on our TV screens on 24th February 2016, you, in a voice choked with emotion, again and again referred to the "child" whose death has been used as a political weapon. We were left bewildered.

At what precise point, Madam Minister, did this sinister, anti-national, casteist, Dalit student of the University of Hyderabad transform into a child for you? Definitely not in those five rejoinders from MHRD (the ministry of human resource development) between 03-09-2015 and 19-11- 2015 with the subject line "anti-national activities in Hyderabad Central University Campus"? Definitely not when you chose to overlook and endorse what can only be read as extraordinarily aggressive and unfounded allegations by a minister in your own government, Mr Bandaru Dattatreya?

Ms Irani, your constant reference to him as a child is nothing but a patronising attempt to dehumanise his reality. It is also deeply disrespectful to Rohit's mother whose child he actually is - because she knows how ironic your appropriation of him is, considering your culpability in his death.

Only after more than a month of his death Rohith becomes a "child" for you "whose death was used as a political weapon". A political weapon by whom, honourable Minister? By the other four students who were expelled with him and who spent those cold nights out in the makeshift velivada (which loosely translates as Dalit ghetto), with nothing but each other for company and succour? By the other students and friends who stood by him? Because you definitely seem to imply that when you say this child could possibly have been revived and yet his body was hidden and no doctor or police was allowed near him.

By now incontrovertible facts have emerged that belie this. However, we would like to go beyond those facts and appeal to your heart. You were not there that night, Respected Minister. You did not see the grief or the shock, nor were you there to feel the despair. How could you even begin to fathom how desperate the students were when they called faculty members and the medical doctor of the university's health centre as soon as Rohith's body was found hanging by students and security officials? As Dr Rajyasree, medical officer, has stated, she rushed to the hostel at 7.30pm and declared Rohith dead at 7.40pm, all recorded in his case sheet on that fateful night of 17-01-2016.

The police arrived at the scene immediately after this. Iraniji, it is beyond our simple comprehension to understand how you with your meticulous preparation, evident in the Lok Sabha speech, ignored these crucial medical documents/preliminary evidences. This also includes the post-mortem report that declares Rohith was dead at least 18-24 hours before the body was examined the subsequent day. From all the medical and post-mortem reports, statements by friends, faculty and university officials - it is clear that Rohith's body was found hours after he hanged himself.

Not only are your claims factually incorrect but they point to an utter lack of respect and sensitivity for the grieving family, friends and students. You are clearly disconnected from the heartbreaking grief of his friends, palpable to anyone present that night or the accompanying anger knowing the injustice that led to this tragedy. Does it befit our honourable minister to implicate these very grieving people in the death of their beloved friend?

Respected Minister, you have also repeatedly claimed that the committee which suspended Rohith Vemula and four other Dalit students was not constituted by your government, but by the UPA regime. You have also emphasised that there indeed was a Dalit faculty member in that committee.

We are astounded that you can so smoothly pass on the responsibility for this tragedy to someone else. Being at the helm of the MHRD, we are sure you must know that the Executive Council's Sub-Committee that took the fatal decision to suspend the Dalit students from hostels and other common spaces was expressly constituted by the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Appa Rao, following five rejoinders from your ministry goading the university to take action against the Dalit students.

We may also point out that the two-member committee constituted by the MHRD itself points out a curious anomaly - the EC and its sub-committee is the very same body that recommends and ratifies - this simply cannot be.

Just in case your busy schedule has not allowed your attention to the following, permit us to point out further contradictions:

That this subcommittee was composed of all upper caste members except for one. We fail to understand how this one member is expected to overrule the will of five.

Most importantly, Prof. Prakash Babu, the sole Dalit member, was co-opted as the Dean, Students' Welfare and NOT as an SC/ST representative. Kindly refer to the constitution of the EC sub-committee in its minutes of meeting dated 24-11-2015.

That the EC sub-committee did not hear out the key stakeholders or consider the counter-affidavit filed by the Commissioner of Police on 3rd October 2015 and simply concurred with the much contested Proctorial Board's decision is matter for another enquiry.

Now let us come to the punishment itself. Let us think of the lives and struggles of the five boys who were suspended - four of them being sons of agricultural labourers and one without both parents. For them, suspension from hostel meant denial of food and shelter. Add to that, denial of right to access common spaces effectively amounted to social boycott in caste terms. Students who had surmounted unimaginable obstacles to reach the university were pushed back right into the velivada, the "untouchable" fringes of the village.

Do you not believe that the administration should have reached out at least when Rohith wrote that 18th December 2015 letter asking the VC to provide Dalit students "(a toxic inorganic compound) and a nice rope" at the time of admission itself?

Ms Irani, for all practical purposes, it was a cry for help. This was an opportunity for us to help this "child" and we lost that opportunity. And we have never heard you quote from this letter that was acknowledged as received by the VC's office.

For a despondent, beleaguered Rohith, hounded and ignored by the powers that be, death was probably the only way to freedom and the limitless wonder and beauty of the universe that so moved him! Perhaps it was the only way out for someone as conscientious, brilliant and reflective as Rohith was. This was Rohith's assertion of dignity, a dignity that was not allowed to him or his friends in their lives.

Their lives, in the words of Gopal Guru, mirrored social death, smeared with indignities of caste. To say that his "suicide note" of 17-01-2016 does not name or implicate anyone amounts to gross opportunism and abandonment of moral responsibility.

Permit us to remind you, dear minister, that the VC did not think/feel it worthwhile enough to meet the grieving students on that fateful night. We are reminded ad nauseam of the threat that students posed to him and continue to pose to him. Students who already had lost a dear friend were accused by the ABVP of violence, and, this is important - students who throughout their struggle since those intense first days following Rohith's death until now have maintained their poise, their maturity, through all their struggles and protests and have never resorted to violence.

Could the Vice-Chancellor of the University not meet and console them in that most vulnerable, heartbreaking moment? Even when nearly 300 teachers requested the VC to come and assured him of a space to meet students along with them, the VC's sense of authority prevailed over his sense of duty and responsibility. This was a defining moment Ms Irani, when the VC could have regained his moral stature and humanity in the eyes of the students. He clearly let history slip through his fingers.

Rohith is not there with us any more. His four friends suspended along with him are, his larger group of friends in this university and growing group of friends across the country are. What we expect from you is very minimal. Do not turn this into a fight against students who have nothing to rely upon, no power - political or social - no connections, no money, not even a home.

Please understand this - the minority status you love to claim for yourself cannot in any way be equated with the state of disprivilege and dispossession that many of these students battle on a daily basis. All our students have is the hope of a future which education can possibly bring - to quote Rohith - "from shadows to the stars".

Do not blight their hopes, their dreams. Help us ensure each one of us is sensitive to cater to their needs inside classrooms, in labs, in hostels, outside, everywhere. As teachers, as ministers, we have much more to offer - truth, equality, justice, hope and inspiration. Not melodrama.

The Prime Minister has extolled your speech tweeting " Satyamev Jayate". 
Whose Truth? We ask.

SC/ST Teachers' Forum & Concerned Faculty, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad.





ABVP: In the footsteps of Pakistan’s Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba - by Javed Anand

The unfolding Modi-BJP-RSS-ABVP nexus in India is but a replay of the Zia ul Haq-Jamaat e Islami-Islami Jamiat e Talaba axis in Pakistan in the 1970s

Ideologically speaking, the ‘Hindu nationalist’ Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) with its Hindu Rashtra agenda is the mirror image of the Abu Ala Maududi’s Jamaat-e-Islami with Islamic state and Shariah law as its goal. It should not be surprising then that the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) – the student body floated by the RSS – is beginning to look more and more, and ominously so, like the Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba (IJT) – the student wing floated by Maududi in Pakistan.

“If you want to change a country, change its students,” noted American writer and journalism, Dan Brooks in an article, ‘Know your theocrats: Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba’, which he wrote in 2011. The RSS wants to “change India” just as the Jamaat-e-Islami is trying to “change Pakistan”. If the ABVP is the former’s instrument for ‘changing students’ in India, the IJT is the latter’s tool for “changing students” in Pakistan.

The comparison does not end there. The RSS and the ABVP claim that the latter’s real growth in numbers took place during the years that the Congress-led UPA governments were in power, that is, before Narendra Modi’s rise to the top. The Jamaat-e-Islami and the IJT too can make a similar claim. Read, Nadeem F Paracha’s excellent 2009 essay, ‘Student politics in Pakistan: A history, lament and celebration’.

Though left-wing student unions retained their dominant position in Pakistan’s colleges and universities through the 1950s, by the early 1960s the IJT had started “to emerge from the sidelines of student politics and materialise as an affective right-wing force on the campuses”. Until then, though the IJT had been around for more than a decade “it was almost completely overshadowed by DSF (Democratic Students Front) and the NSF (National Students Front),” Paracha writes.

In tune with the movement worldwide, the 1960s are often referred to as the “golden era of student politics” in Pakistan. According to Paracha however, “it is the 1970s that one can truly call the golden era of student politics in Pakistan”. It was in the latter decade that Pakistan witnessed the emergence of a state-party-student nexus. What we are witnessing in India today is a replay of the same devious plot.

“When [after ousting Zulfikar Ali Bhutto] President Zia [ul Haq] brought in members of the Jamaat-e-Islami to form his first cabinet (to help him ‘Islamize Pakistan’), IJT’s notorious ‘Thunder Squads’ that were formed in the 1960s at the universities of Karachi and Lahore to challenge leftist student activists, went on a rampage, harassing and physically manhandling their opponents”.

What the Zia-Jamaat-IJT did in the campuses in Pakistan in the 1970s is exactly what the Modi-BJP-RSS-ABVP has been re-enacting in India’s premier educational institutions in recent months— Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), IITs, Hyderabad Central University, JNU…  The difference: In Pakistan the IJT was fighting the “enemies of Islam”; in India the ABVP is fighting “desh drohis”, or put differently, the “enemies of Hindu Rashtra”.

Though ideologically a mirror image of Pakistan’s Jamaat-e-Islami, the RSS has chosen a different organisational path. The ABVP may not need to form its own “thunder squads” since the RSS has already put in place complementary fronts for the purpose: VHP, Bajrang Dal, sundry other Hindutva-inspired outfits, even rogue lawyers as witnessed in the Patiala court recently.

The ABVP may not mimic the IJT’s misdeeds in Pakistan step-by-step. It and the ‘thunder squads’ of the RSS may march separately but they have the same goal in mind: Changing students to change the country. Bearing this in mind, there still are lessons we in India must learn from the IJT’s trajectory post-1970s.

As was only to be expected, Zia’s harsh crackdown on the left-wing student unions in Pakistan discredited the IJT. According to Paracha, “the [Zia] regime’s plans to repress progressive student groups through its allied party, the Jamaat-e-Islami and its student wing… had left IJT in the clutches of uncontrollable violence so much so that the support it had managed to gather through student union elections in the 1970s, now stood eroded, triggering a sympathy wave for the anti-IJT student organisations.”

In the 1978 elections IJT lost out heavily to the Punjab Progressive Students Alliance (PPSA) in Rawalpindi, Islamabad and in many colleges of Lahore. Meanwhile in Karachi and Sind province, the IJT was seriously challenged by the student wings of the newly-formed Muhajir Quami Movement (MQM) of Altaf Hussain and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP).
With Pakistan heavily involved in the USA-Saudi Arabia backed Afghan struggle against occupation by the Soviet army, to stay relevant the IJT grabbed the opportunity to bring the “AK-47 culture” to the campus.

However, in the 1983 elections to student unions the IJT was comprehensively voted out in a majority of colleges and universities across the country. In 1984, the Zia regime outlawed all student unions and politics. The ban continues till date but that does not mean, the IJT has ceased to exist. Here below are some examples of its recent activities:
 
  • February 19, 2016: Baloch students hold protest demonstrations in Punjab, Quetta and Uthal against attacks on students in Punjab by IJT.
  • October 13, 2015: Young women playing cricket at Karachi University are beaten by religious thugs. Members of the IJT who had earlier warned the cricket-playing women, broke up a mixed-gender game and beat up both the men and women members of the Punjabi Students Association with batons.
  • December 2, 2013: Pakistan TV telecasts footage on how IJT “attacked and tortured teachers in Punjab University”.
  • September 2013: Pakistan’s intelligence and law enforcement agencies arrest students belonging to the IJT, also suspected to have Al Qaeda links.  
  • March 2013The founder and leader of MQM, Altaf Hussain demands banning of Jamaat-e-Islami and its student wing Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba for their connections with terrorists... 
  • February 2012: Activists of Imamia Students Organization (ISO) stage a protest demonstration against IJT activists for torturing an ISO activist at the Punjab University.
  • July 2011: "After philosophy students and faculty members rallied to denounce heavy-handed efforts to separate male and female students, Islamists on campus struck back: In the dead of night, witnesses say, the radicals showed up at a men's dormitory armed with wooden sticks and bicycle chains. 
"They burst into dorm rooms, attacking philosophy students. One was pistol-whipped and hit on the head with a brick. Gunfire rang out, although no one was injured. Police were called, but nearly a month after the attack, no arrests have been made.

 "Few on Punjab University's leafy campus, including top administrators, dare to challenge the Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba, or the IJT, the student wing of one of Pakistan's most powerful hard-line Islamist parties.

"At another Lahore campus, the principal disdainfully refers to the Islamists as 'a parallel administration'."

The few examples cited above are apart from the IJT’s ongoing campaigns against Ahmediyas, celebration of New Year and Valentine’s Day and “forbidding progressive literature from the university libraries”.

The ABVP may not, as yet, be able to match the fine record of its Pakistani counter-part. But with the Modi-BJP-RSS-ABVP axis now in place who can say what lies ahead.

P.S.: In an article which may be accessed on SabrangIndia, Prathama Banerjee reports that in Gwalior a few days ago, a meeting organised by the Ambedkar Manch involving an Ambedkarite professor Vivek Kumar from JNU was attacked by ABVP members, who went on to not only fire gun-shots at the gathering but even burn the Indian Constitution, perhaps to avenge Ambedkar’s burning of the Manusmriti half a century ago!

https://www.sabrangindia.in/article/abvp-footsteps-pakistan%E2%80%99s-islami-jamiat-e-talaba-ominously-so

see also


Muslims warned of ‘final battle’ at Sangh meet, Union Minister Katheria talks of revenge

NB: If this meeting yesterday has been correctly reported here, a central government minister and a BJP MP openly talked of revenge killings (khoon ka badla khoon), mass violence and their contempt for the law. Maybe the Prime Minister believes that this too is justified by his mandate. And maybe the courts will take suo moto notice of these bloodthirsty speeches. But maybe not. DS

Muslims were equated to “demons” and “descendants of Ravana”, and warned of a “final battle”, as the Sangh Parivar Sunday held a condolence meeting here for VHP worker Arun Mahaur, who was killed last week by some Muslim youths. Among those present on the dais were Union Minister of State, HRD, and BJP Agra MP Ram Shankar Katheria as well as the BJP’s Fatehpur Sikri MP Babu Lal, apart from other party local leaders, who joined in the threats to Muslims.

Speaker after speaker urged Hindus to “corner Muslims and destroy the demons (rakshas)”, while declaring that “all preparations” had been made to effect “badla (revenge)” before the 13th-day death rituals for Mahaur. “Human skulls would be offered to his martyrdom,” VHP district secretary Ashok Lavania, who has been jailed earlier for assaults on Muslims, said.

Talking about the coming Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, local BJP MLA Jagan Prasad Garg told the crowd, “You will have to fire bullets, you will have to take up rifles, you will have to wield knives. Elections are approaching in 2017, begin showing your strength from now onwards.” The 5,000-odd crowd chanted slogans such as “Jis Hindu ka khoon na khaule, khoon nahin wo pani hai (the Hindu who doesn’t get angry isn’t Hindu enough)”.

VHP general secretary Surendra Jain and Bajrang Dal leaders were also present at the meeting, that was held under heavy security. In his speech, Jain warned the administration, “You have seen the result in Muzaffarnagar. Don’t convert Agra into Muzaffarnagar.” Beginning his speech by lamenting that “a man returning after offering his prayers” had been killed, Katheria said, “We have to make ourselves powerful. We have to launch a struggle. If we don’t begin a struggle, then today we have lost an Arun, tomorrow we will lose another. Doosra jane se pehle, yeh hatyare hi chale jayen is prakar ki taqat humen dikhani hogi (Before another is lost, we must show such strength that these killers themselves disappear).”

Demanding that Mahaur’s killers be hanged, Katheria added that his ministership wouldn’t deter him. “The administration might think that main to mantri ho gaya, haath bandh gaye (that because I’m a minister, my hands are tied).” The minister added that the meeting was just the start. “We are not withdrawing this movement. On Wednesday and Friday, we will all hold condolence meetings in our colonies. After that, whatever our leadership decides, if we are required to take to the streets, we will come on the streets in thousands. Let anybody dare stop us.” MP Babulal urged an open fight with Muslims, and said: “Don’t try to test us… We will not tolerate insults to the community. We do not want unrest at any cost, but if you want to test Hindus, then let’s decide a date and take on Muslims.”

Local BJP leader Kundanika Sharma called other parties “jackals” for seeking votes of “traitors”. “But we want the heads of these traitors, the killers of Arun Mahaur,” she said. “This is not the time to sit quiet. Chhapa maaro, burqa pehno, lekin inhen gher-gher kar le aao. Ek sar ke badle dus sar kaat lo (Raid them, wear burqas, but corner them. Behead ten heads for one head).” VHP district secretary Ashok Lavania said, “The sacrifice of my brother will not go in vain. Our youths will take revenge… Agar hum Hindu naujwan sapni maa se paida hue hain, eent ka jawab patthar se, khoon ka jawab khoon se denge (If we Hindus are born of our mother’s womb, we will reply in kind, with blood). The revenge of the killing of one brother demands killing of ten rakshas.”

Lavania went on to talk about the “preparation” they had made. “Many have approached me asking why we are not doing anything. They are saying do something — arson, murder, shootout. These are common Hindus. We are avoiding this because the organisation (VHP/RSS) is careful about not being held responsible… ultimately it becomes an act of the society. Once people are galvanised, no question would be raised at all. In cases like Ram Janmbhoomi, Muzaffarnagar, the party had disappeared. But it is certain that revenge will be taken before the terahvin is over. Khoon ka badla khoon. Action will obviously be in Mantola area (where Mahaur was killed), but also across Agra. Wherever Hindus are in majority, it will happen. We are fully preparared. If they retaliate, then it will be a mahasangram, Mahabharata. The final battle.”

“During Kali worship, narmund (human skulls) are offered after beheading demons. Before his terhavin, the Hindu community will perform a similar act and offer these narmunds. I am confident,” Lavania said. Surendra Jain said Mahaur “lived for dharma, and died for dharma… Hindu society is no longer willing to sacrifice itself.”

Warning the administration against making “a weak case” against the accused, the VHP leader threatened that his men would kill the accused otherwise. “If you make a weak case under any pressure and release (them), then you may release (them), but this society is not willing to see them walk. (We) Won’t spare (them). You have a different list, Bajrangis have a different list. Their names are in our black list. I urge the workers of Bajrang Dal, nigrani rakhna, soye mat rehna (be alert, you can’t be found napping),” he said.

Jain claimed they would now dispense their own justice, and asked his members to form Gau Raksha Samitis (cow protection units) in every village and asked the administration to “not thwart their efforts as they are doing the administration’s work”. “If anyone, even the IG here, has any doubt about the law, they can approach me. I will show them the clauses of the IPC that say if you (police) do not perform your duty then common citizens can take law in their own hands.”

He added, “We will not take the cases of cow-slaughter to you (police), we will not let you bury those files… Then and there, full and final.” About Mahaur, he said, “We will have to make such an atmosphere that no Arun is ever killed again, no love jehadi dare casts an eye on my mother or sister.” Claiming that people might turn violent soon, the VHP leader said, “We have not decided our course of action after this sabha. But it’s certain that the Hindu community won’t keep quiet. This movement has become a movement of the Hindu community. You can sense the pulse of the people. People of different groups are reacting in a different manner. The reaction of these groups cannot be predicted today. The government must assure that UP does not have an inch of land for cow-slaughters. Those who want to kill cows can go to Bangladesh or Pakistan. If the government gives such kind of assurance, then the anger of society might subside. At present, the Hindu society is angry and only the community will decide its reaction.”

Jagmohan Chahar, the Bajrang Dal district coordinator, dared Muslims “to come out in the open” and said, “Jo chhedega hamari basti ko, hum ukhaad denge uski harek basti ko (If someone dare disturb our neighbourhood, we will uproot their entire neighbourhoods). If you want to live in India, live like Rahim and Rehman. If you try to be Akbar and Babar, we will raze your homes. We are the descendants of Rama. We will destroy the descendants of Ravana.”

Another BJP leader said, “Tell them we have now woken up. Show them you cannot stop a Hindu by deploying some policemen.”  BJP leader Pramod Gupta said, “The real tribute to Mahaur will be when no cow-slaughterer feels safe in Agra.” BJP MLA Yogendra Upadhyaya demanded a statue of Mahaur in Agra so that people know that “protection of cows is our dharma, and removing all obstructions in the way is also our dharma”.

Police have denied that any of the five accused held for the murder had been involved in cow slaughter or smuggling. They have also said the murder happened a day after a scuffle between Mahaur and the five.

also see

Mubashir Mir - Between Sanghi & Separatists: an alternate perspective from Kashmir

The last two weeks have been.. eventful. Popular support for Kashmiris' demand for justice in the rest of India has long been overdue. However, in opposing the Sangh and its brand of violent fascist nationalism, the liberal left must take care not to, unwittingly, join hands with the very monster it is fighting, albeit in a different avatar.
  
The typical Kashmiri separatist is not very different from the Sanghi. He doesn't tolerate any criticism of his Supreme Leader, or an ideology that doesn't fall in line with his own when it comes to the affairs of J&K. Like the Sanghi, he comes up with the most brilliantly innovative insults for those who dare to disagree with him (Endian Dog being the most popular), and he always has the nicest things to say about your female relatives. As far as minority affairs are concerned, I daresay he has surpassed his Sanghi counterparts, as he completely denies the tragedies of Kashmiri Pandits who suffered at the hands of his heroes, the Mujahideen. His blood boils when an army man kills an innocent civilian but he goes into hiding when his ‘brave heroes’ do the same. 

He is the epitome of male chauvinism and patriarchy who threatens teenage girl musicians, attacks girls participating in marathons, and abuses those studying outside the Valley. He berates Shah Faesal and Parvez Rasool, protests against Zubin Mehta concerts, and hates anything and everything even remotely Indian (except bollywood, of course). He protests against Israeli State Terror unleashed on Palestinians but celebrates when the ISIS beheads a Jew. He destroys public and private property and indulges in petty electricity theft while (somewhat justifiably) accusing ‘Endia’ of stealing the resources of, and the electricity generated in, his state.

 And then there's the Kashmiri whom nobody talks about. This person, like every other Kashmiri, is fed up with military rule in his homeland and the numerous atrocities that go unpunished year after year. He knows Afzal Guru wasn't given a fair trial and would give anything to see firm justice dealt to the perpetrators of Kunan Poshpora, Gaw Kadal, Pathribal, etc etc, but he doesn't believe that guns (or stones) are the means to that end. He sometimes wonders why no one talks about the assassinations of Maulvi Farooq, Abdul Gani Lone and Dr. Jalal, but he knows better than to ask such questions out loud. Most questions are anyway answered with bullets in the valley.

He's concerned about his children's education and his own livelihood, both of which get disrupted by everyday strikes called for by the Supreme Leader on every non issue. He is pelted with stones if he tries to drop off his daughter at her school on such a day, and is beaten up by armed goons of the State (also known as the CRPF) if he's caught out buying milk or baby food for his son on one of the many consecutive curfew days. He's the bystander who gets shot when the Police and CRPF open fire on stone-pelters. 

He wants demilitarisation, revocation of AFSPA, a safe healthy environment for his children to grow up in and basic freedoms and fundamental human rights to be provided to all citizens. But at the same time, he doesn't want his homeland to turn into an Islamic Republic of Kashmir, where minorities are persecuted, women are suppressed and Asiya Andrabi and her gang of girls impose their notions of morality. His distrust of Pakistan and its valley-based stooges matches his resentment towards the Indian State.

The next time the good people of JNU organise a protest meeting in the memory of Afzal Guru or to show solidarity with Kashmiris, I hope they spare a thought for this other type of Kashmiri, the one who is caught between the guns and stones, whose voice gets lost in the cacophony of Azaadi and ‘Integral Part’, who doesn't want ‘Geelani wali azaadi’ or ‘Burhan wali azaadi’. 

He wants a peaceful existence free from the shadow of the gun, in a land where his Pandit brothers can feel safe and Muslims and non-muslims, Shias and Sunnis, Kashmiris, Gojars, Dogras and Ladakhis can all live in peace. He dreams of the Kashmir of old, emanating wherefrom Mahatma Gandhi saw a ray of light during the darkest hours in the history of the Indian subcontinent, the Partition.


see also


Uday Bhaskar - Why Involving Ex-Servicemen in the JNU Controversy is Potentially Toxic

The Indian fauj by its apolitical nature remains the last bastion. 
Maintaining this equipoise is imperative

The controversy triggered by anti-national sloganeering on the Jawaharlal Nehru University campus on February 9 – attributed by campus residents to an outsider group – has snowballed into a bitter and emotive national debate outside and inside parliament.

JNU has become a no-holds barred/no-quarter given, zero-sum battle over what constitutes ‘nationalism’ and how supposed transgressions from the ‘norm’ must be dealt with. Many institutions have joined this charged debate and some among them stand compromised or tainted. Here the conduct of the Delhi Police and the lawyers who resorted to vigilantism in Patiala House and attacked JNU Students Union president Kanhaiya Kumar are a case in point. Some media houses have also been guilty of the most deplorable lowering of professional standards.

By unfortunate happenstance, the JNU controversy erupted around the time when uniformed personnel have lost their lives in counter-terrorism operations and both Pathankot and Pampore have become synonymous with the surge of patriotic fervour – particularly in the audio-visual and social media. An avalanche in Siachen led to the tragic loss of more lives during the same period, including Lance Naik Hanumanthappa, who defied nature and the odds to survive – briefly – before he too alas, succumbed and was mourned by India.

Given this charged national mood and the anger over the anti-national slogans at JNU that was stoked by some constituencies, it was predictable that one cross-section of ex-servicemen would wade into the national debate and become the guardians of nationalism and the national flag, especially on TV debates.  Every night, India has been witness to a surfeit of righteous indignation over the university’s many transgressions – some going back over the last 15 years – with this group of veterans demanding atonement and more.

Pitting soldier against student: In an adroit manner, the brave soldier was pitted against the ungrateful student (whose guilt has yet to be established) by some manipulative media outlets.  It is nobody’s case that anti-national activity should be condoned. Yet it is a matter of both regret and shame that the Indian political establishment has used national security in an opportunistic manner.

As part of the corrective, it has now been mandated that the national flag will fly atop every central university campus. Even the height of the flagpole has been stipulated. When this was announced by the HRD minister, the reaction on campus was ‘but we have always had the national flag flying from the admin block so what is this all about ?’

To instil even greater nationalism,  a group of veterans recently met the JNU administration and suggested that an Army memorial to commemorate the lives of those who lost their lives fighting for the country be erected on campus – and thata tank could also be included as part of this visual symbolism to teach students to love their country.

This intervention by some veterans, however well-meaning and emotionally intense, is imprudent and has the potential to dilute the apolitical nature of the Indian military – which remains its most admirable and distinctive trait since 1947.

Over the past seven decades, rank political opportunism and the lowering of professional rectitude has led to a weakening of national institutions across the board. Beginning with Indira Gandhi in the mid-1970s and the dark emergency phase, the bureaucracy, police, and lower judiciary have progressively been weakened and subverted for short-term political advantage. Subservience to the political dispensation of the day became the norm and career-advancement carrots were dangled as incentive.

The rot that started in Delhi spread to the states and education soon became the hand-maiden of politics. The deterioration of educational standards in India and the increasing politicisation of education per se, including rampant privatisation is reflective of this corrosive trend. In short, political compulsions have led to a distortion of constitutional obligations in relation to institutional probity and this malignancy is most stark in the case of the Indian police and lower judiciary.

The JNU controversy which could have been contained – if left to the university administration – snowballed largely due to the political overtones it acquired, starting with the manner in which student organisations closer to the ideology of the BJP were allowed to set the agenda. The alacrity with which the local police invoked sedition charges was a direct product of this process.

Military must remain in its domain: The current involvement of military veterans – even though modest in numbers – has the potential to introduce a political and ideological tenor into the Indian military through osmosis. While Prime Minister Modi himself has repeatedly asserted that the Indian constitution is his guiding document and that there is no other holy book for the government, the national debate and churning that is now symbolised by the JNU controversy has deeply divisive overtones.

Is the majoritarian (Hindu) sentiment the new lodestar of the Indian polity? And if indeed it does prevail at the hustings, what should the orientation of the Indian military be? Nurturing the abiding, inclusive national identity and defending the principles embedded in the constitution – that are above any single political party or socio-religious organisation – require an apolitical and professional military. The institution demonstrated its constitutional fibre in the run up to the emergency imposed by Indira Gandhi; General Tappi Raina, who was army chief at the time, drew the line – courteously but firmly.

The military must remain within the constitutional space accorded to it and veterans would be well-advised to let teachers instil the values that students need to acquire – including a critical faculty – in a constructive manner. Universities, in turn, would be equally well-advised to evolve their own guidelines and norms to avoid denigration of the nation.

Today, one group of veterans is incensed over the anti-national slogans attributed to JNU and advocate a certain prescription. What if another were to take umbrage at what happened in Patiala House and recommend even more muscular redress?

The Indian fauj by its apolitical nature remains the last bastion – as recent events in Haryana demonstrated. Maintaining this equipoise is imperative. Advocating the displaying of tanks on university campuses may generate TV ratings, but will do little to further the cause of the nation.

see also


Atul Dev - The attack on Soni Sori follows her attempts at holding the police in Bastar accountable

On 20 February, Saturday, Soni Sori, the tribal rights activist and leader of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Dantewada at south Bastar in Chhattisgarh, left Jagdalpur at 9 pm and headed home to Geedam. Her friends Shalini Gera and Isha Khandelwal, who had moved to Jagdalpur in 2013 and founded the Jagdalpur Legal Aid Group (JagLAG), had been served an eviction notice on Thursday, following the questioning of their landlord by the local police. On Saturday, they held a press conference about the police intimidation that had forced them out of Jagdalpur. 

Sori had come for the presser, and had stayed back to bid Gera and Khandelwal goodbye. “She wanted to stay back longer, but it was getting late,” Khandelwal told me, when I spoke to her on Sunday. Sori sat on the passenger seat of a motorcycle, behind her long-time friend, Rinki Thakur. It was a 70 kilometre journey westward on the national highway number 16.

“She was scared,” said Khandelwal. “We had received information that Soni might be attacked. But around here, we receive these kind of threats every other day. We were concerned too, but couldn’t possibly think that it was going to happen that very night.”

On their way home, the women were stopped by three men. “About 17 kilometres before Geedam, three of them came from behind on a motorcycle. They stopped us, and then they took Madam [Sori] a little away from me,” Thakur told me. Sori later told Thakur that one of the men held her hands behind her back, while the other applied a dark liquid substance on her face. Sori could not open her eyes, and felt that her face was burning. Fearing that it could be acid, they rushed to a local hospital in Geedam. It was grease oil—that may have been laced with corrosive substances. Thakur told me that the hospital authorities called an ambulance after treating Sori, and sent her to Maharani hospital back in Jagdalpur.

On Sunday evening, Sori was brought to Delhi, and was immediately admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at the Indraprastha Apollo Hospital. On Monday, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal visited the activist in the hospital. The doctors told The Hindu that her condition is now “stable and there is no threat to her life.”

What happened on Saturday fits with the grim pattern of recent events that have unfolded in Chhattisgarh. Last month, on 10 January, members of the Samajik Ekta Manch, an organisation in Jagdalpur that was recently set up to counter Naxalism in Bastar and support police work, had gone to the house of Malini Subramaniam, an independent journalist. The members of the organisation had threatened her for writing articles that they felt tarnished the image of Bastar police. A month later, on 7 February, the Samajik Ekta Manch staged a protest outside her house, and hurled stones inside.

Last Wednesday, Krishn Kaushik, a staff writer with The Caravan, highlighted the various links between the Samajik Ekta Manch and SRP Kalluri, the chief of police for Bastar range. Kaushik’s story delved into the unsavoury details of Kalluri’s past: allegations ranging from intimidation to torture and rape. According to a report published on Scroll.in, a news website that also featured Subramaniam’s writing regularly, the local police showed up at Subramaniam’s house a few hours after the story was published online. The policemen took Subramaniam’s domestic help to the station for questioning. On Thursday—the day on which Gera and Khandelwal were told that they would have to vacate their home—Subramaniam’s landlord served her an eviction notice too.

In the days preceding the attack, Sori had been raising the issue of an allegedly fake encounter in Mardum at Bastar district. On 15 February, the local police picked up a villager named Hidma from his house in the middle of the night and branded him a Naxalite. On learning of this, Sori had taken Hidma’s family—his wife and daughter who testified that he was picked from his own house and not captured in a conflict—to Raipur and tried to lodge a First Information Report (FIR). She was unsuccessful.

Since Kalluri took over as the chief of police in Bastar in June 2014, there has been a rapid surge in the number of “surrendered Maoists.” In December 2014, The Indian Express reported that over seventy percent of those who had surrendered were “ordinary villagers” who could not be called “surrendered Maoists” according to the eligibility criteria. Kalluri responded by saying that he was “not concerned about the eligibility criteria or the surrender policy.”

Since even before the Hidma encounter, Gera said, Sori had been trying to file an FIR against Kalluri. The 13-point document says that in public meetings, Kalluri instigated the locals to socially boycott Sori and her nephew, Lingaram Kodopi; motivating people to sloganeer outsider her house, terrifying Sori’s children. It also states that on 12 January, in Kunna village of Dantewada district, which comes under Kalluri’s jurisdiction, security forces assaulted people, stripped women, and raped them. Twice, Sori was turned back from police station, her complaint unregistered.


“Sori is the person who has been fighting for the people in this area,” Khandelwal, who has left the town with Gera, told me. “I can’t help but think that all the attacks against us—lawyers and journalists active in Chhattisgarh—are to take her support system away.”

see also



स्मृति ईरानी को एक जे-एन-यू के छात्र की चिट्ठि: अनन्त प्रकाश नारायण

आपकी सरकार आर एस एस के सांस्कृतिक राष्ट्रवाद, जिसे कॉर्पोरेट समर्थन मिला हुआ है, के एजेंडे को लागू करने के लिए पूरी तरह प्रतिबद्ध है. और उसके लिए यह ज़रूरी है की समाज से सोचने और तर्क करने की क्षमता को खत्म कर दिया जाय. चूँकि विश्वविद्यालय तर्क और वैज्ञानिकता की जगह होते है, इसीलिए स्वाभाविक निशाने पर हम आए...


सेवा में,
श्रीमती स्मृति ईरानी जी
“राष्ट्रभक्त” मानव संसाधन विकास मंत्री,
भारत सरकार
संसद में दिए गए आपके भाषण को सुना. इससे पहले की मै अपनी बात रखूँ , यह स्पष्ट कर दूं की यह पत्र किसी “बच्चे” का किसी “ममतामयी” मंत्री के नाम नहीं है बल्कि यह पत्र एक खास विचारधारा की राजनीति करने वाले व्यक्ति का पत्र दूसरे राजनैतिक व्यक्ति को है. सबसे पहले मै यह स्पष्ट कर दूं कि मै किसी भी व्यक्ति की योग्यता का आकलन उसकी शैक्षणिक योग्यता के आधार पर नहीं करता हूँ बल्कि साफ़ साफ़ कहूं तो मै “योग्यता”(मेरिट) के पूरे कांसेप्ट को खारिज करता हूँ.
मानव संसाधन मंत्रालय का पद भार लेने के साथ ही यह अपेक्षा की जाती है कि आप इस देश के केंद्रीय विश्वविद्यालयों में उनकी ऑटोनोमी का सम्मान करते हुए उसके लिए उत्तरदायी होंगी. रोहित वेमुला के मामले में आपने क्या किया यह सबके सामने है कि किस तरह से वहाँ के प्रशासन पर आपने दबाव डाला जिसका नतीजा रोहित के institutional मर्डर के रूप में हमारे सामने आया. लेकिन मै इन सारी चीजो पर अभी बात नही करना चाहता. आप बार बार अपनी औरत होने की पहचान (आइडेंटिटी) को assert करतीं हैं और इसको करना भी चाहिए क्यूंकि नारी जाति उन ढेर सारे हाशिये पर किए गए लोगों में एक है जिनको सदियों से शोषित किया गया है. मै आपसे यह पूछना चाहता हूँ कि एक दलित स्त्री जो कि हर तकलीफ उठाते हुए अकेले अपने दम पर जब अपने बेटे बेटियों को इस समाज में एक सम्मानपूर्ण जगह देने के लिए संघर्ष कर रही थी तब एक नारी होने के कारण आप की क्या जिम्मेदारी बनती थी ? क्या आपको उस महिला के जज्बे को सलाम करते हुए उसकी बहादुरी के आगे सर झुकाते हुए उसके साथ नहीं खड़ा होना चाहिए था? 
हाँ, मै रोहित की माँ के बारे में बात कर रहा हूँ. जो महिला इस ब्रहामणवादी व पितृसत्तात्मक समाज से लड़ी जा रही थी, अपने बच्चों को अपने पहचान से जोड़ रही थी, उस महिला को आप व आपकी सरकार उसके पति की पहचान से क्यूँ जोड़ रहे थे? आपको भी अच्छा लगता होगा की आपकी अपनी एक स्वतंत्र पहचान है. लेकिन यह अधिकार आप उस महिला से क्यूँ छीन  रहीं थीं? क्या आप भी पितृसत्तात्मक व ब्रहामणवादी समाज के पक्ष में खड़ी होती हैं? अपना पूरा नाम बताते हुए अपनी जाति के बारे में आपने सवाल पूछा और आपका भाषण खत्म होने के पहले ही लोगों ने आपकी जाति निकाल दी. 
मै आपकी जाति के बारे में कोई दिलचस्पी नहीं रखता हूँ और मै यह बिलकुल नहीं मानता हूँ की अगर आप उच्च जाति के होते हैं तो आप जातिवादी ही होंगे लेकिन आपके विभाग/मंत्रालय के तरफ से जो चिट्ठियाँ लिखी गई उसमे रोहित और उसके साथियों को जातिवादी /caste-ist बताया. मैडम क्या आप caste-ism और  caste assertion का अन्तर समझती हैं? मै समझता हूँ की आप ये अन्तर भली – भाँति समझती हैं क्यूंकि आर एस एस जो आपकी सरकार और मंत्रालय को चलाता है, वह वर्ण व्यवस्था के नाम पर जाति व्यस्वस्था को भारतीय समाज की आत्मा समझता है और आर-एस-एस के एजेंडे को लागू करवाने की राजनैतिक दृढ़ता हमने समय समय पर आप में देखी हैं.
मुझे उम्मीद है कि आपने मनुस्मृति पढी होगी और आपको जानकारी होगी कि आर एस एस मनुस्मृति के मूल्यों को लेकर कितनी राजनैतिक प्रतिबद्धता रखती हैं. आपको यह स्पष्ट होगा की वो मूल्य दलित और नारी समुदाय के प्रति हमारे अन्दर किस तरह की चेतना को स्थापित करने का प्रयास करते हैं. मै एक दलित होने के कारण इसको पढ़ कर काफी अपमानित एवं बैचैन महसूस करता हूँ लेकिन एक नारी होने के कारण आप के अन्दर यह बैचैनी क्यूँ उत्पन्न नहीं होतीं? आप अपना भाषण देते समय जितना भावुक होने की कोशिश करतीं हैं, लगभग सफल भी होतीं हैं, वो भावुकता क्या मनुस्मृति पढ़ने के समय भी होती है? अगर आपने मनुस्मृती को अब तक नहीं पढ़ा है तो उम्मीद करता हूँ कि उस किताब को पढ़ने के बाद एक नारी होने के कारण आप तुरंत भाजपा छोडेंगी और उससे पहले किसी दलित सांसद, जो की उदित राज़ भी हो सकते हैं, के साथ मिलकर संसद में हीं मनुस्मृति का दहन करेंगी.
आपने अपने भाषण में चीख चीख कर कहा की रोहित के मृत्यु के ऊपर राजनीति हो रही है. मैडम शायद आप इतनी नासमझ नहीं हैं कि आप यह नहीं जानती हैं कि रोहित की मृत्यु भगवा राजनीति का परिणाम थीं. रोहित दक्षिणपंथी राजनीति, जिसकी वाहक आप भी हैं, के खिलाफ था जिसकी कीमत उसे अपनी जान गंवाकर चुकानी पड़ी. फिर भी रोहित की महानता देखिये कि उसने आपको माफ़ किया. आज आपकी सरकार व संगठन इस देश के हर विश्वविद्यालय को छात्रों की कब्रगाह बनाना चाहते हैं. पहले IIT मद्रास, FTII, फिर HCU, AU, और अब JNU. हमारे मामले में आपने संसद में जांच कमिटी का हवाला दिया, लेकिन क्या आपको यह याद नहीं है कि आपकी चिट्ठियाँ जो हैदराबाद जा रहीं थीं वह वहाँ की जांच कमिटी के ही निर्णय को बदने का दबाव डाल रही थीं? हमारे मामले में क्या हुआ? बिना हमारी बात सुने हीं हमें de-barred कर दिया जाता है. लेकिन क्या आपको नेचुरल जस्टिस का ये सिद्धान्त नहीं मालुम है कि एक व्यक्ति की बात सुने बिना आप निर्णय नहीं ले सकते है. क्या संसद में हमारा नाम पढ़ते समय आपको यह सावधानी नहीं रखनी चाहिए थी कि इन्क्वायरी कमिटी के निर्णय आने का इंतज़ार कर लिया जाए?
आपने महिषासुर शहादत दिवस की बात की. क्या आपको यह नहीं मालुम है कि इस देश में तमाम तरह की धार्मिक भावनाएं (जिसमें आपका विश्वास नहीं है )हैं. इस देश के संविधान ने सबको बराबर अधिकार व स्वतन्त्रता दे रखी है. क्या आप यह नहीं जानती हैं की इस देश के कुछ हिस्सों में दलित व आदिवासी महिषासुर के साथ अपनी धार्मिक भावनाएं जोड़ते हैं? मै एक कम्युनिस्ट हूँ और धर्म में विश्वास नहीं करता, लेकिन मै यह मानता हूँ कि किसी भी व्यक्ति को अपनी धार्मिक मान्यताओं को तय करने का उसका अपना अधिकार है और रही बात किसी भी महिला के चरित्र हनन की तो इस मुद्दे पर भी जे एन यू के वामपंथी पार्टियों के पर्चे हमारे संघी रजिस्ट्रार के पास हैं. कृपया उसे भी मंगा कर के पढ़ लें. 
आपने इस देश के न्यायालयों की चर्चा करते हुए यह बताने की कोशिश की कि अगर हम न्यायलय के पास किसी न्यायिक उपचार के लिए जाते है तो हम उस संस्था पर सवाल नहीं उठा सकते. बहुत ही छोटी समझदारी है आपकी. आपके हिसाब से अगर सोचा जाए तो इसका मतलब यह है कि अगर कोई मजदूर किसी कारखाने में काम कर रहा है और वहाँ से वह वेतन ले रहा है तो उसके प्रति होने वाले शोषण वह अन्याय के खिलाफ वह नही बोलेगा. मै इस तर्क को एक सिरे से खारिज करता हूँ, मेरा मानना यह है की किसी भी संस्था को बेहतर बनाने के लिए यह ज़रूरी है कि उसके दोषों/ कमी/ कमजोरियों पर निर्ममता से बहस किया जाए और उसे सुधार कर और बेहतर बनाया जाए.
इसके सिवा भी आपने और भी बहुत बातें की. इन सभी बातों को सुनने के बाद क्या आपको सच में नादान मान लिया जाए? या बात कुछ और ही हैं? हम सब यह जानते हैं कि आपकी मौजूदा सरकार को इस समय देश में सबसे ज्यादा चुनौती छात्रों, किसानो और बुद्धिजीवियों से मिल रही हैं. इसीलिए आर एस एस के निशाने पर यह वर्ग पूरी तरह से हैं. छात्रों ने आपकी सरकार बनने से पहले हीं आपके फासिस्ट रवैये के खिलाफ मोर्चा खोल दिया था. आपकी सरकार आर एस एस के सांस्कृतिक राष्ट्रवाद, जिसे कॉर्पोरेट समर्थन मिला हुआ है, के एजेंडे को लागू करने के लिए पूरी तरह प्रतिबद्ध है. और उसके लिए यह ज़रूरी है की समाज से सोचने और तर्क करने की क्षमता को खत्म कर दिया जाय. चूँकि विश्वविद्यालय तर्क और वैज्ञानिकता की जगह होते है, इसीलिए स्वाभाविक निशाने पर हम आए. 
आप आर एस एस के ब्रहामणवादी हिंदुत्व राष्ट्रवाद एवं कॉर्पोरेट एजेंडे को लागू करने में इतना मशगूल हो चुकीं हैं कि आपने किसी भी विश्वविद्यालय को बने रहने के जो मूल्य होते हैं उनको बर्बाद करने की कसम खा ली हैं. आप अपनी राजनैतिक विचारधारा के प्रति जो कि बहुसंस्कृतिवाद में विश्वास नहीं रखती है, के साथ खड़ी हैं और हम बहुसंस्कृतिवाद के साथ खड़े हैं, हम आपसे किसी भी रहम की उम्मीद नहीं करते हैं और जितना तेज़ हो सके प्रहार कीजिये हम भी अपनी ताक़त बटोर कर के पूरे हौंसले से आपका सामना करेंगे. अंतिम बात कह करके अपनी बात खत्म करूँगा, एक बार कभी किसी ने आपके घर के बाहर प्रोटेस्ट किया था तो आप कैमरे के आगे आकर रोने की कोशिश कर रहीं थी और अपने बच्चों के डर का हवाला दे रहीं थीं, लेकिन मेरी माँ नहीं रो रही हैं, बस थोड़ी चिन्तित हैं लेकिन फिर भी बोले जा रही हैं कि मोदी से लड़ते रहना, डरना मत.
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