NEW Delhi: Kanhaiya Kumar, Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union president was on Wednesday granted interim bail for six months by the Delhi High Court in the sedition case. Kumar, accused of raising ‘anti-India slogans’ in JNU campus during an event organised on February 9 to mark the third death anniversary of Afzal Guru, was granted bail on a surety of Rs 10,000.
During the hearing this week, while Kumar’s counsel had argued that the student leader had never raised any anti-India slogans, Delhi Police had maintained that there was evidence that he and others were shouting anti-India slogans and were holding Afzal Guru’s posters.
Police had claimed that Kumar was “not cooperating” in the probe and even came out with “contradictory” statements in joint interrogation by Intelligence Bureau (IB) and Delhi Police.
The defence lawyers including senior advocate Kapil Sibal had countered the allegations saying there were “some outsiders with covered faces who raised anti-India slogans and Kumar was seen in CCTV footage asking them for their identity cards.”
The bench had also asked tough questions of the police on slapping sedition charges on the accused and asked it to show evidence against him of his “active role” in raising anti- India slogans. Kumar had also distanced himself from Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, the two other accused arrested in the case.
During the hearing, the Delhi government’s counsel had urged the court to grant bail to Kumar.
Interestingly, this comes a day after the superannuation of Bhim Sain Bassi from the post of Delhi’s police chief.