The Delhi High Court on Thursday set aside the punishment against 15 students, including ex-Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union President Kanhaiya Kumar, awarded by a committee constituted by the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU).
Ex-JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, along with 14 other students, had the disciplinary actions taken against them set aside by the Delhi High Court on Thursday. The students had been involved in organising an event commemorating the hanging of Kashmiri separatist Afzal Guru in February 2016, which allegedly saw separatist slogans being raised.
After the uproar over the sloganeering, a five-member committee was constituted by JNU to investigate the matter. Punishments in the form of expulsion from the hostel (Kanhaiya Kumar), rustication (Umar Khalid), and barring entry in the University for five years (Anirban) were awarded to some students. However, the High Court in its judgement that replied to the petition filed by the students against the committee’s orders said, “The writ petition is allowed to the extent that the Appellate Order dated August 22, 2016, is set aside and the matter is remanded back to the Appellate Authority with a direction to grant an opportunity of inspection to the petitioner”. A period of six weeks has been granted for the students to get a chance to present their side regarding the issue and get a view of the official records and basis of the committee’s judgement. After this the committee must declare another judgement, having heard the side of the students.
Although the students had condemned the slogans, sedition cases were filed against some. The Delhi Police is yet to file a charge sheet regarding the February 2016 incident.
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