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Police Detain DU Prof Who Called Afzal Guru a Martyr

Geelani was booked on sedition charges for anti-India sloganeering and provoking students.

Published: 16th February 2016 04:44 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th February 2016 04:59 AM   |  A+A-

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Members of the ABVP shouting slogans on Rajpath against the Anti-National activities in JNU, New Delhi on Friday. Express photo by Shekhar Yadav

NEW DELHI: The main accused in the anti-national incident that took place at the Press Club of India, SAR Geelani, was detained late Monday by the Delhi Police for questioning. Geelani was booked on sedition charges for anti-India sloganeering and provoking students. “We have evidence against him and that needs to be verified,” said a senior police officer. Sources said he is likely to be arrested by Tuesday.

Geelani, a Delhi University professor, had hailed Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru and called him a martyr. Geelani booked the venue with the help of another Delhi University professor Ali Javed.

Javed was questioned by the police for two consecutive days last week. Javed told the police that Kashmiri youth present there (at the Press Club meeting) raised provocative anti-India slogans and termed Afzal Guru and Maqbool Bhatt as shaheed and put up posters glorifying them. Javed also claimed the hall was booked on the request of his friend Geelani, who was earlier arrested for his alleged role in the 2001 Parliament attack but was later acquitted by the Supreme Court for lack of evidence.

The apex court, however, had remained suspicious of his role in the terror strike and said as much in its 2005 judgment. Excerpts of Javed’s statement, accessed by Express, bring the focus back on Geelani, who the Delhi Police said, was responsible for raking up the Afzal Guru issue and projecting the terror convict as a martyr. Professor Javed said Geelani betrayed him and other professors by eulogising Afzal. “I feel that was a breach of trust,” he said.

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