New Delhi: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday raised question on the timing of filing of charge sheet in the 2016 JNU sedition case, in which Kanhaiya Kumar, Umar Khalid and seven Kashmiris have been named. Claiming that the students were being used to score political points ahead of Lok Sabha elections 2019, Mufti said,”No surprises here. We are months away from the general election and like always, using Kashmiris to score extra political points with the Indian electorate has become somewhat of a pre-requisite.”
She also drew a parallel between 2013 hanging of Afzal Guru and JNU sedition case, saying, “Timing of the chargesheet couldn’t be any more suspicious. When UPA was in power, it decided to send Afzal Guru to the gallows ahead of 2014 LS polls and now BJP is repeating the same before 2019 elections. Wonder how many more Kashmiris, along with their families, will have to pay a price to secure the political fortunes of national parties,” the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chief said in a series of tweets.
Her reaction comes a day after the Delhi Police special cell filed the chargesheet in the sedition case against former JNU Students Union president Kanhaiya Kumar, Anirban Bhattacharya and Umar Khalid and others. The 1,200-page chargesheet was filed under various Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 124A (sedition), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 465 (forgery), 471 (using as genuine, forged document), 143 (punishment for unlawful assembly), 149 (unlawful assembly with common object), 147 (rioting), and 120B (criminal conspiracy).
Earlier in the day, the Patiala House Court adjourned the JNU sedition case till January 19. The matter was deferred after Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Deepak Sehrawat, who was supposed to take cognisance of the charge sheet filed by the Delhi Police in connection with the 2016 case, went on leave.
On February 9, 2016, a protest was held in JNU against the death sentence given to Afzal Guru and Maqbool Bhat. At the event, reportedly anti-national slogans were raised. Video clips aired by Zee News were verified and the CFSL report said those hadn’t been tampered with.