NEW DELHI: JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar had objected to cancellation of permission for the controversial event against hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, JNU Registrar Bhupinder Zutshi has claimed.
Zutshi, deposing before the high-power enquiry committee constituted by Vice-Chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar, is believed to have said that Kanhaiya Kumar was against the authorities' decision to cancel permission of the February 9 event during which anti-national slogans were allegedly raised.
"I had called a meeting of JNSU in my office at 3 pm on February 9 to discuss the route for the new bus acquired by JNU for disabled students. Kanhaiya Kumar and Rama Naga (JNUSU General Secretary) reached first. Around 3 pm, we had a discussion on the bus route. After 10 minutes, Saurav Sharma (ABVP member and JNSU joint secretary) also came. We all discussed the bus route for 10 minutes.
"Sharma later showed me a pamphlet regarding the 'cultural event' on 'judicial killing of Afzal Guru' and said some of the students are organising this event today (February 9, 2016) at 5 pm at Sabarmati Dhaba," Zutshi has told the committee.
The Registrar has further maintained that when the varsity decided to withdraw the permission, Kanhaiya had called him objecting to the cancellation.
JNU had instituted a disciplinary committee on February 10 to probe into the controversial event. On the basis of the preliminary enquiry report eight students including Kanhaiya were academically debarred.
The five-member committee which has been granted two extensions for submitting its report is expected to come up with its recommendations by March 11.
Students including Kanhaiya, have already refused to depose before the committee demanding that the preliminary inquiry was conducted in an absurd manner and students suspended without questioning.
The students have been demanding that committee starts its enquiry afresh, a demand which has been ruled out by the university.
Zutshi, is also under criticism from a section of students and teachers for allegedly mishandling the issue.
Mukhia, a Professor of Medieval Indian history, also spoke about how the colonial history looked at 'essentializing' identities of rulers and Kingdoms to Hindus and Muslims and thereby providing 'a distorted and false picture of Indian history'.
"Indian historians also adopted this, but things began to change in 1950s and 60s. Suddenly there was a wave of change when historians started talking of not just class but community and colonial legacy began to give way. In 1980s and 90s, a fascinating new world had opened. But the RSS and BJP want us to forget all this, and go back to James Mills (British historian) and view it as only a Hindu and Muslim thing," Mukhia said.
The historian added that JNU was a place that was set up to questioned established notions and that 'questioning nationalism doesn't make one anti national' but helps in understanding it better.
The classes, moderated by JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, also saw activist Teesta Setalvad addressing students.
Saying that JNU had become a 'beacon of hope' for students across the country, Teesta Setalvad called for creating a 'coalition' to defeat the RSS and right wing agenda.
"They want 15 years so they can make a India a Hindu Rashtra. It may be difficult, problematic or complex, we will have to come together to create groups to fight this agenda," Setalvad said,
She also took a dig at the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) saying, "Jaise Jamiat-e-Taliba chalta tha Pakistan mein, waise ABVP chalta hai yahan."
The activist also lauded the teachers at JNU adding, "If the administration in HCU had been as sensitive and supportive of the students as in JNU, and paid attention to the letter he wrote in December, perhaps, he would have been here".