ABVP, the student wing affiliated to the RSS, today protested and forced a college at Delhi University to withdraw invitation to a speaker, who has been accused of shouting anti-India slogans and organising an anti-India event earlier.
ABVP was protesting against invitation by the college to a JNU student named Umar Khalid, who has been accused of shouting slogans like “Bharat tere tukde honge” and “Bharat ki barbadi tak jung rahegi” and organising the event at JNU where these slogans were shouted last year in February.
A case of sedition was filed against Khalid later, though he has not been convicted by any court yet. This fact is used by left-leaning apologists to claim that Khalid is innocent. However, Khalid himself has never tried to hide the fact that he has no special love or respect for India.
Last year in July, when Indian security forces killed terrorist Burhan Wani in Kashmir, Umar Khalid, who was out on bail at that time, praised Burhan openly in a Facebook post.
“I don’t care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my gun and keeps on shooting. These were the words of Che Guevara, but could have just been Burhan Wani’s too,” he had written, in an oblique support to violence and killings by terrorists in Kashmir.
While such words fall under “reasonable restrictions” that Indian constitution puts on speech (restricted speech subject to public order and incitement to violence), one can argue that it is not fair to assume that Umar would have said something similar at Ramjas College.
But it appears that ABVP had made up their mind and forced the college to cancel the invite. This is similar to what leftist student groups do. We had earlier seen how JNU was forced to cancel an invite to a speaker after leftist students protested. Now ABVP has been able to match that feat.
One can only say that free speech has become victim to competitive intolerance triggered by student politics.