27 July, 2021

Politics Behind Kanhaiya Kumar Sedition Case: Have AAP, BJP Joined Hands?

It took four years for the Arvind Kejriwal government in Delhi to grant permission to prosecute Kanhaiya Kumar in the JNU sedition case. What changed Kejriwal’s mind?

Kanhaiya attacked at a Delhi court, 2016
Photograph by PTI
Politics Behind Kanhaiya Kumar Sedition Case: Have AAP, BJP Joined Hands?

There are two dates separated by four years and a political about-turn that only Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal can shed light on. And he has yet to, till the time of writing. The first date: February 9, 2016. Controversial slogans were allegedly shouted on this day at an event on the JNU campus when Kanhaiya Kumar was president of the university’s student union. Delhi Police accused him and several fellow students of sedition and, subsequently, moved the AAP government to sanction prosecution of the accused.

This was the time when Kejriwal was up in arms against the BJP-led Centre and he led a stinging attack on PM Modi over the JNU sedition case. Kejriwal alleged that doctored videos (from the JNU event) were used to slap sedition charges on Kumar, who was arrested and granted bail on March 3, 2016. Following his release from jail, Kumar gave a speech and Kejriwal praised it on Twitter: “Amazing clarity of thought expressed wonderfully.”

The feud between AAP and BJP continued, while Kumar graduated from student leader to a CPI candidate for...

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