Centre misusing sedition law: Mayawati

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Terming Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader Kanhaiya Kumar’s arrest on charges of sedition a “political conspiracy,” Bahaujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati on Monday accused the Narendra Modi government of misusing the law as a tool to target opponents and declaring them anti-national.

While raising concerns that the NDA government was “hell-bent on ruining the institution of JNU,” to further the agendra of the RSS, Ms. Mayawati said the Centre was “axing its own foot” by framing students under sedition.

A day after Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh courted controversy by alleging that the JNU event organised for Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru had the backing of Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief Hafiz Saeed, Ms. Mayawati said controversial comments by BJP Ministers hinted there was some political play at hand. “The state machinery is being misused to crush opposing voices,” the former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister said. “Defaming a prestigious institution like JNU by terming it anti-national is sad and condemnable.”

Ms. Mayawati said that Mr. Kumar’s arrest “appears wrong on the first instance” in absence of concrete proof, and was executed by the Delhi police under “political pressure.”

While stating that the BJP had in the past misused laws like TADA (Terrorist and Disruptive Activities Prevention Act), she questioned the ruling party at the Centre over its alliance with the PDP in Jammu and Kashmir. One the one hand, the BJP booked students for sedition for holding an event on Afzal Guru, while on the other, the BJP was taking all pains to form a government with the PDP, which had opposed Guru’s hanging and also called him a martyr, Ms. Mayawati said.

 

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