New Delhi: JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, out on bail in a sedition case, today led a march of students and launched a blistering attack on HRD Minister Smriti Irani, demanding her resignation for “targeting” academic institutions.
“She calls us her children, but has she ever spoken to my mother or Rohith Vemula’s mother. I refused to be called her child. We demand that she resign for the way academic institutions are being attacked,” Kanhaiya said addressing the protestors at near Jantar Mantar.
The JNU students were marching from Mandi House to Parliament demanding release of PhD scholars Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, currently in judicial custody on sedition charges. The protesters were stopped near Jantar Mantar by police.
“Smriti Irani says she is the mother of school children.
Okay Mata ji, did you call the mother of Rohith Vemula or my mother and say, ‘Your sons may have done something, but I am standing with you.’
“With me, my mother has also been made a traitor. Rohith Vemula’s mother has also been made a traitor. You shed tears.
Your cry is fake, your laughter is fake, your speech is false,” Kanhaiya said.
The JNUSU president also demanded release of fellowships of JNU research scholars.
“A minister said if you are a student then study. We want to study. You’re a minister, release our fellowships, give us jobs. None of us is interested in coming to Jantar Mantar or going to jail or committing suicide. You have driven us to suicide,” he said.
He also attacked RSS and said the students are protesting against the outfit.
“It is being said traitors are living in JNU. Modiji we are not traitors. We are fighting against RSS. (Wo kehte hain JNU mein deshdrohi rehte hain, hum kehna chahte hain Modiji hum deshdrohi nahi, RSS ke khilaf droh kar rahe hain”.
Four attempts were made by different persons during the speech to attack Kanhaiya which were foiled by students and police, which detained four people.
The student leader also said he was not interested in joining politics and that he was a ‘man of movement’.
“I won’t join any political party. I am a man of movement and I will continue to fight in movements,” he said.