The Delhi High Court today set aside the disciplinary action taken by JNU against 15 of its students, including ex-JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, in connection with a controversial event on February 9 a year ago in the varsity.
Justice V. Kameswar Rao said the JNU's orders imposing varying punishments on the students was issued without following the principles of natural justice, as they were given limited time to inspect the records based on which the punitive actions were taken.
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It also clarified that the students would abide by their undertakings given earlier to the court that "they shall not indulge in any strike or "dharna" or agitation or coercive action in future in connection with the issue, till such time the proceedings between the parties attain finality". The court told JNU's appellate authority to pass a reasoned order within six weeks of hearing the students, who also included Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, that the varsity did not give them due opportunity to defend themselves against the charge of indiscipline.
The university had slapped the students with a number of punishments, including rustication, hostel debarment, and financial penalty on the basis of probe by the High Level Enquiry Committee.
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JNU's appellate authority had been asked by the court to pass a reasoned order within six weeks of hearing the students.
A fine was imposed on Kanhaiya, Umar was rusticated for one semester, while Bhattacharya was barred from the university premises for five years.
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The appellate authority held them guilty of indiscipline in connection with the controversial February 9 event on the campus in which "anti-India" slogans were allegedly raised.