NEW DELHI: India’s Home Minister Rajnath Singh alleged on Sunday that a protest meeting that was held at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to commemorate the executed Kashmiri Afzal Guru had a Pakistani connection.

“What happened at JNU has been fully supported by Lashkar (-e-Taiba) chief Hafiz Saeed. I appeal (to) all political parties that whenever such situations arise where anti-India slogans are raised, the entire nation must speak in one voice,” Mr Singh said.

The Home Ministry said Mr Singh’s comment that Hafiz Saeed had supported the protests at JNU, was based on inputs from “different agencies”.


Student leader’s parents say their son is being punished for his opposition to Hindutva politics


The statement came after the minister’s remark triggered a political controversy and Left Front leaders suggested that he prove his claims.

Soon after, senior CPM leader Sitaram Yechury said the home minister shouldn’t “manufacture evidence and go by what’s on the ground”. CPI leader D. Raja called for a “credible probe”.

The ministry’s clarification also follows reports that Mr Singh and the police were misled by a tweet purportedly from a Twitter handle in the name of Hafiz Saeed.

Lashkar chief Hafiz Saeed’s Twitter handle was blocked a long time ago.

The local police have sought a transfer of the case to the Special Branch, saying it is a matter of sedition and terror links could emerge.

The Delhi government has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the case.

Following the arrest of JNU students body chief Kanhaiya Kumar on Friday and the sedition charges against him, the matter has drawn criticism from the Congress, the Left Front and Delhi’s ruling Aam Aadmi Party. They attacked the Modi government for “encroaching on the autonomy of universities”.

The ABVP, a student’s body linked to the neo-fascist RSS, has denied that its members were shouting anti-India slogans at the programme and the video released on social media that’s going viral is a fake.

The ABVP said it would complain to the Cybercrime Cell about the video.

The Congress has alleged that the students were involved in the attack on its senior leader Anand Sharma, who had accompanied party vice president Rahul Gandhi to the campus. A First Information Report has been filed.

Kanhaiya Kumar’s parents, supporters of the Communist Party of India and who live in Bihar, have said their son was being victimised for his opposition to Hindutva politics.

Published in Dawn, February 15th, 2016

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