Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has applauded Kanhaiya Kumar’s speech at the JNU post his release from the jail. He tweeted, “What a brilliant speech by Kanhaiya…” #KanhaiyaKumar became the top trending topic on microblogging site Twitter following the speech. Many students were seen wiping tears during Kanhaiya’s address.
JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar, arrested for sedition 20 days ago, was released from the Tihar Jail here on Thursday evening and returned to the university campus amid noisy celebrations by hundreds of students and teachers.
Kanhaiya Kumar in his speech said they are seeking freedom within the country and not from India, as he hurled barbs at Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Addressing students at the campus, 29-year-old Kumar, who has been slapped with sedition charge for allegedly raising anti-national slogans, said he had many differences with the prime minister but he agreed with his tweet “Satyameva Jayate” which he had posted in praise of HRD Minister Smriti Irani’s fiery speech in Lok Sabha on the JNU row as it is in the Constitution.
“I have many differences with the PM but I agree with his tweet Satyameva Jayate because these words are in our Constitution,” he said, as his passionate speech was punctuated by repeated cheers and raising of slogans.
“We are not seeking ‘azaadi'(freedom) from India. We want ‘azaadi’ within India,” he said. Thanking all who stood by him while he was in Tihar jail here, Kumar said he believed in the Constitution and Judiciary of India.
Kumar said he had no ill feelings towards anyone and won’t indulge in “witch hunting” towards RSS’s student outfit ABVP. “There is no animosity towards ABVP because we are democratic. We see them as our opposition,” he said.
“We truly believe in democracy and Constitution. We don t look at the ABVP as an enemy, we look at them like the Opposition,” he said. “Let me just say it is not easy to get admission in JNU neither it is easy to silence those in JNU,” he added.
Kumar said his arrest is a planned attack on JNU. “This attack is to delegitimise the UGC protests, to prevent justice to Rohith Vemula (the dalit scholar in Hyderabad who committed suicide,” he said.
Kumar said the struggle of peace loving and progressive sections of the society in the wake of the JNU row and Rohith Vemula suicide will be a long fight.
During the course of his one hour, six minute-long speech, Kanhaiya also referred to Modi’s narration of an anecdote related to President Nikita Krushchev of erstwhile Soviet Union in the Lok Sabha.
“When he (Modi) was speaking I wanted to tell him to talk about Hitler as well. He should speak about Mussolini as well after all his guru Golwalker (second RSS chief) had met the former. PM talks about Mann ki baat but does not listen,” he said to loud cheers.
“If you speak against the government, their cyber cell will frame you using doctored videos and count the number of condoms in your hostel,” he said. He also dared BJP leader Subramanian Swamy to a debate.
Kanhaiya and the students, who gathered in hundreds, also repeatedly raised the ‘Azaadi’ slogan, seeking freedom from casteism, patriarchy and injustice among others.