Delhi Police on Monday filed a chargesheet against former JNU Students Union (JNUSU) President Kanhaiya Kumar and nine others in a sedition case over the February 2016 incident where some students allegedly shouted "anti-national slogans" on the Jawaharlal Nehru University campus.
The chargesheet filed before Metropolitan Magistrate Sumeet Anand also names former student activists Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya. The seven other people named in the chargesheet hail from Kashmir, namely Aquib Hussain, Mujeeb Hussain, Muneeb Hussain, Umar Gul, Rayeea Rasool, Bashir Bhat and Basharat.
Among others named in the chargesheet but not made accused, include former JNUSU vice president Shehla Rashid and Communist Party of India leader D Raja's daughter Aparajita.
The charges slapped under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) deal with sedition, voluntarily causing hurt, forgery, using as genuine a forged document, punishment for unlawful assembly, unlawful assembly with a common object, rioting and criminal conspiracy.
The matter has been listed for further hearing on Tuesday, January 15.
In their chargesheet, Delhi police have claimed that they have based their findings on documentary evidence, CCTV footage and eyewitness accounts of around 90 people, reports Bar and Bench.
The chargesheet comes almost three years after the Delhi High Court granted Kanhaiya Kumar interim bail in March 2016, three weeks after he was arrested on charges of sedition. Soon after, an Additional Sessions Judge granted interim bail to Khalid as well as Anirban in the case.
A case had been filed against Kanhaiya Kumar, Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya on February 11, 2016, in connection with the events that took place on February 2, 2016, when anti-India slogans were allegedly raised at an event held to commemorate the hanging of Parliament attack mastermind Afzal Guru.
Reacting to the development, Kanhaiya Kumar said it was a diversionary ploy by the Modi government to hide its all-round failures.
"I have not received any summons or information from the court. But if it is true, then we are thankful to the police and Modi that finally after 3 years, when it is time is for him and his government to go, the chargesheet has been filed. But what is pertinent is the timing of the charge-sheet -- just ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.
"It is evident that there is a political motive behind this. The motive is that the Modi government has been a failure in all aspects, it has not been able to fulfil even a single promise, so it is playing all its cards to divert the attention," he told the media.
Pointing to the chargesheet being filed after 3 years of the incident, he said the Modi government, just as all its other promises, was "not serious" and using the issue now as a political tool.
"If the government was really serious about the case and maintained that we did indulge in anti-national activities, then why did it take 3 years to file the chargesheet, that too just before the polls?" he asked.
With IANS inputs