In a shockingly partisan statement that blatantly misrepresents events, the Bar Council of India has issued a report that justifies the well documented attacks by a mob of lawyers on JNU students, teachers and media at Patiala House Courts over two days (February 15 and 17, 2016) as ‘a reaction to the incidents, which are grave in nature and very dangerous for the country’. BCI Joint Secretary Ashok Kumar Pandey claimed that a large number of JNU teachers and students and others had arrived at the court in three to four buses and raised slogans and used ‘provocative words’. This led to the untoward incident in which ‘both the sides took part,’ said the report, adding that ‘any true citizen or a lawyer of India’ was supposed to react strongly to the ‘anti-India’ slogans.
We, the undersigned faculty members of Jawaharlal Nehru University, wish to set the record straight. Nine of us reached Patiala House Court No 4 between 1 and 1.15 pm on 15th February 2016 to attend the hearing on Kanhaiya Kumar’s bail plea. The sole objective of our presence there was that when Kanhaiya Kumar was produced he would see the faces of his teachers in the courtroom. At that time, a few students and other teachers of JNU, and some members of CPI, the parent organization of Kanhaiya’s student group, were already waiting silently outside, similarly wanting him to see friendly and familiar faces when he was produced. There were about 15 to 20 of them, hardly enough to fill 4 cars, let alone one bus.