Open Letter to the President of India from Indian Students of Al-Mustafa University

Dear Honorable President,

As it is in your esteemed knowledge, the unfortunate events of 9th February 2016 when Anti-National slogans, as appeared on news media were “allegedly” raised in Jawaharlal Nehru University campus, following which a nationwide unrest and media rhetoric followed. No sooner than the attention of masses was drawn to the extremely infuriating slogans being raised, was it proved that the video was clearly Doctored and those slogans were never in fact raised in JNU Campus. To add to it, the Police and certain factions from those in power reacted in a very hostile manner, targeting the students on charges of what was termed as “Sedition” has been a really very damaging episode when viewed from an academic perspective for a great nation like India, its democratic structure, and the “Right to Freedom of Expression.”

Firstly, the Freedom to voice opposition to the Government and its Policies through peaceful means is absolutely in conjunction with the provisions of the Indian Constitution, and nowhere does it allow for the Police to arrest and/or to humiliate, or act hostile to any person or group voicing criticism against the Government’s policies, nor is it against the Nation. Sedition is in fact the uncompromising attitude of certain groups in the nation today who are unwilling to stand the trial of academic debates and discussion pertaining to the miseries of the common man, unwilling to accept the rising corruption and ever increasing hardships for the common man, and yet again focusing on issues of religious hatred and communal divide. A sad example of the decaying system is the Lost Soul, Rohith Vemula, who couldn’t stand the extremely corrupt authorities battling a common man – A Common Man, who, is heartbroken, and has become so weak in this country which you today are leading. Such arrogance from those in power despite proven negative track record, which is deteriorating day after day, is severely hampering the peace and patience of the Youth, who are the blood of the nation, and are eager for success in this ever-demanding world. Such attitude from those in power is hampering the Unity and Harmony of our Nation, as the Youth who today are more aware and more awake than any period in Indian history, see it with their own eyes as to who is breaking the Nation on grounds of religion and who is not.

Secondly, the way Political leaders, Delhi Police, lawyers and some Media Houses dealt with the whole issue, through targeting the whole JNU community, by tarnishing its image and labeling it as a University filled with anti-national elements, suppressing the students & teachers, police charging at a college premises and arresting JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, assaulting / abusing him and Media persons repeatedly in and outside the Court premises in the presence of the police, was utterly disgraceful for our nation. It was also a matter of concern when our respected Home Minister came forward and alleged that recent events in JNU were backed by Hafiz Saeed. Such statements having a very low factual value, which were scoffed at by youth all over the social media, leave aside them being proved true, are not expected by senior members of our nation when dealing with such sensitive issues, for it was clearly an allegation beyond perception for a common student community standing for the basic rights of citizens.

Such dealings with the unfortunate events are giving clear signs that certain factions among those in power are unwilling to accept the very same socio-economic failures and corruption as their predecessors, added with communal intolerance, and are willing to suppress every voice and every person, which they find against them.

People who initially doctored those Anti-India slogan videos have still not been identified and instead whole JNU community is being targeted. Despite the fact that many JNU students have always raised their voice in support of the poor and the underprivileged, and have taken a stand against the Capitalistic and Oppressive approach of the Government, which in any case does not mean stand against the Nation, but they were portrayed in a negative way and the whole JNU community was declared as traitors and Anti-National by many news anchors, media houses and political leaders which resulted in the ongoing chaos,
disrupting the unity, peace and harmony of our nation.

Police has arrested JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar saying that he was present at the event held for commemorating the second death anniversary of Afzal Guru and has participated in Anti-India slogans.
However, there is no strong evidence which confirms these claims. Charging Kanhaiya with Sedition charges clearly shows that police is now working on the base of rumors through doctored videos and photos which went viral over Social Media and TV News Channels. On the other hand, several videos were also available which showed that Kanhaiya is against the oppressive ideologies of Imperialism, Capitalism, Caste System, Extremism, RSS, and
totally committed to India by raising the issues related to underprivileged sections of society, but this were ignored completely.

The whole series of events defamed one of the most secular, prestigious and reputed Institutions of India by false accusations.

We strongly condemn this behavior of Central Government and Delhi Police and demand:

1) The release of Kanhaiya Kumar and removal of the sedition charges on him.

2) Arrest of all those who were involved in the instigation of this issue by staging this whole story.

3) Stop targeting JNU by spreading rumors & putting false accusations.

4 HRD ministry must stop its unwanted interference in working of esteemed universities like it did in case of Late Scholar Rohith Vemula.

5) Prosecution of people who attacked Kanhaiya and Media representatives in the Court premises; and if they are lawyers, their licenses should be cancelled.

6) Culprits in the Suicidal-Murder of Rohith Vemula should also be punished as soon as possible.

With sincere regards,
Indian Students Union
Al-Mustafa International University,
Qom, Iran.

The letter was posted on University’s blog run informally by students.

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