BHUBANESWAR: Even as the former JNU Students Union president, Kanhaiya Kumar supported the Indian Army's surgical attacks across the LOC in Jammu and Kashmir in response to the Uri attacks that claimed lives of 18 Indian soldiers earlier this month, he flayed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for bragging about launching the strikes instead of dealing with the neighbouring country in a non-military manner. The surgical attacks, he said, was a necessary step to show Pakistan that India is not weak. Addressing the Azadi Samavesh that was held to mark the completion of 80 years of the All India Student Federation (AISF) here on Monday, he said the surgical strikes should not be politicised and used for electoral gains. "Instead, political leaders should now think of how to ensure livelihood for the widows and children of the 18 martyrs," he said. In the same breath, Kanhaiya said that Pakistan was a weak and poor enemy for India to deal with. "Who is India competing with? Pakistan is an extremely troubled country that is already fighting poverty, lack of education, healthcare and fight between Shia and Sunni Muslims. If India has to show its strength, it has to fight or compete with bigger enemies like China and the US," he said. Kanhaiya came down heavily on the Modi-led Central Government for failing to fulfil the promises it made after coming to power. "Modi assured of employment, Swachh Bharat, increasing literacy rate, safety of women and development of tribals and farmers. None of it has been fulfilled till date," he said. Kanhaiya said the country is not made up of 31 per cent people who voted for the Modi Government, but it also constitutes 69 pc of the population who are against the Government. "Questioning is our constitutional right but that does not mean that we are anti-national," he said, while asserting that he has no personal animosity with Modi but there are ideological differences. AISF is not anti-national, it is against casteism, unemployment and corruption, he further said. Kanhaiya added that Modi cannot change the fate of India or bring in development by just tweeting or updating status on social networks. The former JNU Students Union president also welcomed Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for snapping alliance with BJP after the Kandhamal riots. Violence over slogans, black flags Tension prevailed at the venue after some Akhila Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) activists displayed black flags at Kanhaiya and threw black ink at his car. Police nabbed some ABVP members but AISF activists tried to attack them. This led to a scuffle between ABVP and AISF members and in the melee, five persons were injured. At least 40 ABVP activists were detained by the police, said DCP, Satyabrat Bhoi. Earlier in the day, some ABVP activists burned down a poster of Kanhaiya at the venue.
Express News Service