JNU row: Court grants six-month interim bail to Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya

| Friday, March 18, 2016 - 18:45
First Published |

New Delhi:  After the Delhi High Court granted interim bail to JNUSU leader Kanhaiya Kumar who was charged with sedition, a court on Friday also granted interim bail to Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya who were taken into custody from the Jawaharlal Nehru University on February 22. 
Both the JNU students have been asked by the court to furnish a bail bond of Rs. 25,000 each. They have also been asked by the court to not leave the Delhi region without availing permission from the court. 
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The students have been charged for allegedly making seditious slogans against the government from inside the JNU campus. Though the controversy has bogged down due to allegations of doctored videos being spread, debates about the virtue of nationalism, and the criticism of Kanhaiya's leftist stand, the JNU issue is far from being officially done and dusted. 

Granting six month interim bail to them on parity with Kanhaiya Kumar, the court noted that there was no previous criminal record against them and "nothing has been brought on record which could indicate that they are likely to abscond from jurisdiction of the court". 
"No submission has been made (by police) to the effect that both the applicants Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya have been involved previously in any criminal case. No record has been placed by the state regarding any such past conduct of both these persons.
"Although the allegations levelled against Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya are per se serious in nature, but as claimed by police themselves, the video footage of the incident has been sent to the forensic science laboratory. Its analysis and final report will certainty take some time," it added.
Delhi Police had opposed the bail plea saying th eir case was different from that of Kanhaiya Kumar as they were the organisers of a controversial event on the varsity campus on February 9 where anti-national slogans were raised and he was not.
Both the students surrendered before police last month. A case was registered against Khalid and Bhattacharya at the Vasant Kunj police station in south Delhi, soon after Kanhaiya was arrested on the same charge on February 12. 


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