New Delhi: Former Press Council of India chairman and Supreme Court of India judge Markandey Katju, who never shies away from speaking his mind, on Wednesday opined that Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student Umar Khalid was not a traitor.
The ex-apex court judge tweeted: “I do not regard Umar Khalid of JNU as a traitor. He is brave and honest, but immature, and has to learn a lot.”
I do not regard Umar Khalid of JNU as a traitor. He is brave and honest, but immature, and has to learn a lot
— Markandey Katju (@mkatju) June 1, 2016
Katju's reaction comes days after the Delhi High Court Friday stayed all disciplinary action, including rustication orders of the JNU student.
Khalid was rusticated for one semester and fined Rs 20,000.
Umar Khalid has been in trouble since he was arrested in a sedition case over an event against the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.
The university took the action on April 25 after a high level inquiry committee set up by the varsity administration found them guilty of "misconduct" and "indiscipline".
Staying the disciplinary action order, the court said they if their appeal against disciplinary action order is rejected by the appellant authority (headed by vice chancellor), the order of disciplinary order shall not be given effect for two weeks.
This will give a window to the students to challenge the appellant authority decision before the high court.
The February 9 event led to the arrests of Kanhaiya Kumar, Khalid and Bhattacharya on sedition charges after it was alleged that participants at the event shouted anti-national slogans. Delhi Police repeatedly claimed they had evidence against Kanhaiya Kumar and the other students but failed to produce it in court, leading to their release from jail on bail.