JNU student’s bail plea transferred
The Supreme Court has transferred the bail plea of Jawahar Lal Nehru University Student Union leader Kanhaiya Kumar to the Delhi High Court. It noted that assuming exclusive jurisdiction over the case will send a wrong impression to lower courts that they are “incapable” of handling it.
“I personally believe that if we hear this matter, we will give the impression that other than the Supreme Court other courts are incapable of handling this situation,” Justice J. Chelameswar observed.
Agreeing with Kumar’s lawyer that apprehension to the life and security of the student, his lawyers and journalists is not “fanciful” but genuine, the Bench, also comprising Justice Abay Manohar Sapre consciously restrained itself from hearing the bail on the ground of constitutional decorum and mutual respect to their judicial fraternity in the Delhi High Court.
“The Delhi High Court is a constitutional court also,” Justice Chelameswar said.
Kumar was arrested on sedition charge for allegedly shouting anti-India slogans at an event held on the university campus in support of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.
A Delhi court had sent him to jail till March 2. While he was taken to court for this hearing, Kumar was beaten up by lawyers who had assembled on the premises. He was hit the second time inside the court trial room, waiting for his hearing to begin.
The Bench gave Kumar, represented by senior advocates Soli Sorabjee, Raju Ramachandran and advocate Vrinda Grover, liberty to move the High Court on the same day itself.
The Bench asked the High Court to take up Kumar’s bail plea expeditiously and ordered all documents and records pertaining to the bail be transferred to the High Court forthwith.
The Supreme Court entrusted the Centre and the Delhi Police to provide security to those involved in the case when they come to the High Court.