Standing With JNU, from Around the World – Statements of Solidarity

From leading scholars in Japan, Australia and the US to universities and groups across India, there has been an outpouring of support for the JNU students charged with sedition.

Even as reports of Kanhaiya Kumar being beaten under the police’s gaze have surfaced, and a tense standoff between the people of Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Delhi police drags on, various academic communities from around the world have written in with their support for the students. The ones The Wire has received are collected and reproduced, in full, below.


  1. Architects in solidarity with the JNU community
  2. IIT Delhi faculty – Letter of solidarity for JNU
  3. Syracuse University – Statement of solidarity for academic freedom in India
  4. University of Oxford members, alumni – In solidarity with JNU
  5. Japanese scholars working on India – Statement in support of the teaching and student community of Jawaharlal Nehru University
  6. Statement of solidarity by Noam Chomsky, Orhan Pamuk, and others
  7. Stanford University extends solidarity to JNU
  8. Letter of solidarity with JNU students and faculty from professionals, academics and artists in West Bengal
  9. Statement from academicians in Gujarat
  10. Canadian academics stand with JNU and student struggles in India
  11. Open letters from CeMIS professors and students expressing solidarity with JNU students and staff
  12. Statement of solidarity with student activists in India, from Pennsylvania
  13. Bangalore research network’s letter of solidarity with JNU
  14. In solidarity with the dissenting student community in India: A statement from Australia
  15. Statement of solidarity with Jawaharlal Nehru University, India – City University of New York
  16. Statement of support for JNU – from the academic community of Rhode Island (PDF)
  17. Statement from Sri Lanka in solidarity with protesting students of India (PDF)
  18. Statement of solidarity with JNU from members of Yale University
  19. A citizen’s appeal to the president of India to restore trust in the democratic spirit of our Constitution (PDF)
  20. Statement of solidarity from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (PDF)
  21. UK South Asia Institutes in solidarity with JNU
  22. Statement of solidarity from a group of alumni – TISS, India (PDF)
  23. Open letter in support of the students and faculty of JNU – Berlin academics

1. Architects in solidarity with the JNU community

To: The JNU Teachers Association, JNU Students Union
CC: Vice Chancellor, JNU

We are writing this in utmost shock and despair regarding the recent events and developments at your campus. We want to extend our full support to the JNU teachers association and the democratically elected JNU Student Union. We believe there is a difference between the nation, the state and the government of the day, and fully support your constitutional right to air your positions, as different or diverse as they may be, without illegal interference from any particular ruling ideology, party or state machinery.

As those engaged in architecture, we believe that imagination and reason are the highest of human faculties. This gift is what we constantly cultivate and rely on – in academia and in practice – when we question what exists, however natural, fixed and irreplaceable it may seem, and fearlessly posit alternatives. Indeed, there is little difference for us between possessing a moral imagination and being able to imagine such alternate worlds and other ways of being.

The inability therefore to envision life in another’s shoes, to disagree and to counter ideas with more aesthetic or eloquent ones without resorting to character assassination, violence and charges of anti-nationalism, betray to us an alarming lack of imagination, and we strongly condemn this in all its forms.

We condemn this absence of imagination and the physical and epistemic violence it has unleashed on the university community especially teachers and students. We stand with you in support of the university as a marketplace of ideas where all ideas and opinions are passionately argued, ripped apart, defended and critically re-imagined in ever new ways, leading to a more enlightened citizenry. This must be allowed to happen without fear or favour, risk of persecution or charges of sedition. If nothing else, the imagination of our founding fathers demands it, and we are in solidarity with your right to exercise it.

(This statement represents us in our individual capacities and not the institutions we are associated with.)

Signatories: (In alphabetical order)

S.No. Name Designation Location
1 A.Srivathsan Professor, CEPT University Ahmedabad Ahmedabad
2 Abhishek Biswas Industrial Designer Goa
3 Ajas P Fasal Architect Trivandrum
4 Akshay Srinivas Student Delhi
5 Amit Rastogi Team lead, CnT Architects Bangalore
6 Amit Sarma Associate Professor, Sushant School of Art and Architecture Delhi
7 Amrita Dasgupta Architect New Delhi
8 Amrita Madan Professor New Delhi
9 Aneesh Babu Architect Dubai, United Arab Emirates
10 Anisha Architect Delhi
11 Aparna V Architect Kochi, Kerala
12 Arsh Architect Delhi
13 Arun Jacob Mathew Architect
14 Arun.S.R. Architect Kerala
15 Arusree Mohanty Chhaya Architect Sweden
16 Ashish Byakod Architect Bangalore
17 Ashwini Kher Assistant Professor Gurgaon
18 Avni Mehta Student New Delhi
19 B S Bhooshan Architect. Principal BSB Architects Mysore
20 Bhawna Jaimini Program Assistant, Hunnarshala Foundation Bhuj, Gujarat
21 Boney Philip Project Manager Dubai
22 Debashree Architect, Academician Bangalore
23 Debasish Borah Project director, Roots Collective, Ladakh Leh
24 Deeksha Architect New Delhi
25 Deepak Kumar Student, M. Arch (Urban Design) Delhi
26 Deepanshu Arneja Architect New Delhi
27 Deepu Ravi Editor Trivandrum
28 Divya Chopra Architect New Delhi
29 Dr Vibhuti Sachdev Professor Delhi
30 G Shankar Chief, Habitat Technology Group Thiruvanananthapuram
31 Ganga Dileep C Architect, Assistant Professor Trivandrum
32 Gaurav Roychoudhury Architect Bangalore
33 Girish Chandran Lecturer, College of Architecture Trivandrum Trivandrum
34 Harshavardhan Architect Bangalore
35 Immanuel J Nicholas Architect Bangalore
36 Indu V Junior Architect Kerala
37 Ishan Pal Student Delhi
38 Ismet Khambatta Director Ahmedabad
39 Jaisim Architect Bangalore
40 Jaweed Darbar Architect- Engineer Bangalore
41 Jayaraj Sundaresan Academic Bangalore
42 Jinoj M. Assistant Professor Trivandrum
43 Juhi Malpani Architect-Town Planner Delhi
44 Kamlesh Pohekar Associate Professor Bangalore
45 Kanchan Gupta Architect & Planner Mumbai
46 Kanishka Prasad Architect, DESIGN Daftar New Delhi
47 Karan Grover Principal, Karan Grover & Associates Baroda
48 Karthik K Shetty Freelancer Karnataka
49 Kiranjith CS Assistant Professor, KMEA College of architecture. Kochi, kerala
50 Kshitij Dhyani M.Arch, student, Sir JJ College of Architecture, Mumbai Delhi
51 Leon Morenas Associate Professor of Architecture Delhi
52 Madhav Raman Partner, Anagram Architects New Delhi
53 Mahesh Radhakrishnan Principal Architect Chennai
54 Manasi Co founder, Partner. Bhoomija Creations. Trivandrum
55 Manish Ahuja Architect New Delhi
56 Manpreet Juneja Architect Delhi
57 Manu Mahajan Urban Designer Delhi
58 Maria Katticaran Architect Los Angeles
59 Maya Gomez Architect Trivandrum
60 Miki Desai Architect, teacher, writer Ahmedabad
61 Madhavi Desai Architect, teacher, writer Ahmedabad
62 Mona Architect Delhi
63 Monica Chaudhary Architect New Delhi
64 Mukta Naik Visiting Faculty, School of Planning and Architecture Gurgaon
65 Naveen Mahantesh Principal Architect, Cresarc Architects Bangalore
66 Neelkanth Chhaya Architect Ahmedabad
67 Nipesh Architect Delhi
68 Niveditaa Gupta Architect and Photographer New Delhi
69 Parul Choudhary Co-Principal PS Collective Ahmedabad
70 Prabir Haldar Architect New Delhi
71 Prahlad G Architect Ahmedabad
72 Pramod balakrishnan Chief architect Chennai
73 Prem Chandavarkar Managing Partner, CnT Architects Bangalore
74 Priyanka Purty Architect Jharkhand
75 Prof. Manoj Mathur HoD, Architecture, SPA New Delhi Delhi
76 Prof.Oommen.T Architect Trivandrum
77 Prosenjit Banerjee Architect New Delhi
78 Radhika Singh Architect New Delhi
79 Raja Shyam Sundar Architect Chennai
80 Rajshree Rajmohan Architect & academician
81 Ratnakiran architect, assistant professor Vijayawada
82 Rita John Assistant Professor of Architecture, USAP, Delhi Delhi
83 Rojan Thomas Joseph Architect Bangalore
84 Ruchika Lall Architect Delhi
85 Rupali Gupte Associate Professor, Founding Trustee, School of Environment and Architecture Mumbai
86 Ruturaj Parikh Director, Charles Correa Foundation. Goa
87 Ryan Christopher Sequeira Fellow, National Institute of Urban Affairs Delhi
88 Sahil Sasidharan Associate – Academics & Research, IIHS Bangalore/Bengaluru
89 Saiju Mohamed Architect Kerala
90 Samruddhi S Chaphale Architect
91 Sanjana Mathur Architect New Delhi
92 Sara Ather Architect Delhi
93 Sathyanarayan M architect Kerala
94 Satya Gopalan Architect Delhi
95 Saurabh Tewari Research Scholar Kanpur
96 Selva Prakash M Assistant Professor, Tips Global Institute Chennai
97 Shabeeb Khader Project Architect United States
98 Shaji TL Professor Trivandrum
99 Sharat Sunder R Asst. Professor Thiruvananthapuram
100 Shebin George Architect thiruvananthapuram
101 Shikha Doogar Partner, R+D Studio Gurgaon
102 Shitij Dogra Architect New delhi
103 Shobana Assistant professor Chennai
104 Shreyasi Pal Asst. Prof Bangalore
105 Shridhar Rao Architect Gurgaon
106 Shyamkumar P Architect Kanhangad
107 Shyne U HOD, KMEA COA Cochin
108 Sinu Rao Architect JUBAIL,KSA
109 Smriti Asst. Professor Delhi
110 Sobia Consultant urban planner Bengaluru
111 Sonal Sundararajan Partner, ADRG Mumbai
112 Soumini Raja Asst. Professor, College of Architecture Trivandrum Trivandrum
113 Soumya Shukla Architect Delhi
114 Sourabh Phadke Architect Himachal Pradesh
115 Sreejith.S Landscape Architect Thiruvananthapuram
116 SS Kiran Urban Transport Planner Nagpur
117 Subin Umar Rahman Architect Trivandrum
118 Surbhi Singhal Architect Delhi
119 Swati Janu Architect Delhi
120 Tallulah D Silva Architect
121 Thomas Oommen Associate Professor, Sushant School of Art and Architecture Delhi
122 TM Cyriac Architect Trivandrum
123 Vaani Dua Asst. Professor Delhi
124 Vandini Mehta Architect New Delhi
125 Vanicka Arora Conservation Architect Gurgaon
126 Vidhu Saxena Freelance Designer New Delhi
127 Vishakha Jha Architect, Urban Development Consultant Mumbai
128 Vrinda Jariwala Asst. Professor, S.S.A.A., Ansal University Delhi
129 Zeenat Niazi Vice President, Development Alternatives New Delhi

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2. Letter of solidarity for JNU from members of IIT Delhi faculty

We, a group of faculty members from IIT Delhi, are seriously concerned by the events unfolding at JNU and in the national capital over the past few days. A university space is an invitation to think, discuss, argue, debate sometimes heatedly, but always with respect. This respect must extend to ideas one disagrees with. It is only from such an open exchange of ideas that our collective understanding can increase, and knowledge can advance. But it seems that the spaces for such open discussion, of which JNU has always been one, are gradually being closed across the country.

We condemn the increasingly narrow definitions of nationalism that are being imposed on the citizens of India and used as instruments for the closing of the Indian mind. We choose to embrace a nationalism which celebrates our plurality as a country, and which is not threatened by dissent and disagreement. We stand with all those who share this vision.

(This statement is issued in our individual capacities, and does not represent the institution’s opinion.)

  1. Krishna AchutaRao (Centre for Atmospheric Sciences)
  2. Sumeet Agarwal (Electrical)
  3. Vibha Arora (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  4. Amitabha Bagchi (Computer Science)
  5. Somnath Baidya Roy (Centre for Atmospheric Sciences)
  6. Premachandran Balachandran (Mechanical)
  7. Subhashis Banerjee (Computer Science)
  8. Varsha Banerjee (Physics)
  9. Biswajit Bhattacharjee (Civil)
  10. Bijoy Boruah (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  11. Arudra Burra (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  12. Charusita Chakravarty (Chemistry)
  13. Pritha Chandra (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  14. Shouri Chatterjee (Electrical)
  15. Santanu Chaudhury (Electrical)
  16. Divya Dwivedi (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  17. Naveen Garg (Computer Science)
  18. Arjun Ghosh (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  19. James Gomes (School of Biological Sciences)
  20. K Hariharan (Mechanical)
  21. Samar Husain (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  22. Farhana Ibrahim (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  23. Ravinder Kaur (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  24. Stuti Khanna (Humanities and Social Sciences)
  25. Reetika Khera (Humanities and Social Sciences)

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3. Statement of solidarity for academic freedom in India (Syracuse University)

We, the undersigned at Syracuse University, Colgate University, and SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, are in solidarity with our comrades at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), India against the ongoing anti-democratic actions by the Indian state. We demand an immediate end to the police action against students on campus, and withdrawal of all charges against Kanhaiya Kumar, President of the JNU Students’ Union. We further demand that the Central Government put an immediate end to its prejudiced persecution of student activists on campuses across the country.

We strongly believe that the charge of sedition against Kanhaiya Kumar follows spurious claims. This arrest is an excuse for the state to root out dissenting voices on JNU campus, a move towards converting educational institutions like JNU into an arm of the authoritarian state. Attempts of a similar nature have been witnessed recently at other Indian educational institutions such as Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) and Hyderabad University. The growing threat to academic freedom posed by the current political climate is transnational, and extends beyond India to other parts of the world–it is a threat we face here in the United States, too.

For any word or action to qualify as being “seditious” under Indian law, it has to directly issue a call to violence. This was not the nature of the protest held by JNU students against the judicial killing of Afzal Guru, who was convicted of an attack on the Indian parliament. The peaceful protest held on February 9 on campus was not unlike other protests convened at the university over the last several decades. Dissent is an essential part of a healthy democracy. We therefore strongly condemn the Indian government’s response to the students’ protests and demand that the state refrain from authoritarian behaviour. In this spirit, we urge the Vice Chancellor of JNU to protect members of the university community and safeguard their democratic rights.

  1. Natasha S.K., Social Science, Syracuse University
  2. Taveeshi Singh, Social Science, Syracuse University
  3. Mitul Baruah, Geography, Syracuse University
  4. Sean Wang, Geography, Syracuse University
  5. Miguel Contreras, Geography, Syracuse University
  6. Manuela Ruiz Reyes, Geography, Syracuse University
  7. Carolina Arango-Vargas, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  8. Tina Catania, Geography, Syracuse University
  9. Linh Khanh Nguyen, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  10. Jon Erickson, Geography, Syracuse University
  11. Tom Perreault, Geography, Syracuse University
  12. Jessie Speer, Geography, Syracuse University
  13. Sravani Biswas, History, Syracuse University
  14. Don Mitchell, Geography, Syracuse University
  15. Tod Rutherford, Geography, Syracuse University
  16. Jacquelyn Micieli Voutsinas, Geography, Syracuse University
  17. Sturdy Knight, Information Studies, Syracuse University
  18. Jenna Sikka, Sociology, Syracuse University
  19. Jaisang Sun, Social Science, Syracuse University
  20. Madhura Lohokare, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  21. Brian Dobreski, Information Studies, Syracuse University
  22. Sujata Bajracharya, Religion, Syracuse University
  23. Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Women’s and Gender Studies, Syracuse University
  24. Alisa Weinstein, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  25. Li Chen, Mass Communications, Syracuse University
  26. Taapsi Ramchandani, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  27. Laura Jaffee, Cultural Foundations of Education, Syracuse University
  28. Tula Goenka, Television-Radio-Film, Syracuse University
  29. Romita Ray, Art and Music Histories, Syracuse University
  30. Dorothy Kou, Sociology, Syracuse University
  31. Kriangsak Terrakowitkajom, Geography, Syracuse University
  32. Susan S. Wadley, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  33. Emily Mitchell-Eaton, Geography, Syracuse University
  34. Scarlett Rebman, History, Syracuse University
  35. Matt Huber, Geography, Syracuse University
  36. Brian Hennigan, Geography, Syracuse University
  37. Parvathy Binoy, Geography, Syracuse University
  38. Liz Mount, Sociology, Syracuse University
  39. Himika Bhattacharya, Women’s & Gender Studies, Syracuse University
  40. John Western, Geography, Syracuse University
  41. Vani Kannan, Composition and Cultural Rhetoric, Syracuse University
  42. Ani Maitra, Film and Media Studies, Colgate University
  43. Diane Swords, Cultural Foundations of Education, Syracuse University
  44. Alejandro Camargo, Geography, Syracuse University
  45. Cecilia Van Hollen, Anthropology, Syracuse University
  46. Alexandra Jebbia, Documentary Film & History, Syracuse University
  47. David Gustavsen, English, Syracuse University
  48. Michael Gill, Cultural Foundations of Education, Syracuse University
  49. Tiago Teixeira, Geography, Syracuse University
  50. Nimanthi Rajasingham, English, Colgate University
  51. Kimberly E. Powell, Women’s & Gender Studies, Syracuse University
  52. Sharon Moran, Environmental Studies, SUNY-ESF
  53. Adam Fix, Environmental Studies, SUNY-ESF
  54. Alvaro A. Salas, Public Administration, Syracuse University
  55. Diane R. Wiener, Division of Student Affairs – Disability Cultural Center, Syracuse University
  56. Brett Keegan, Composition and Cultural Rhetoric, Syracuse University
  57. Jyoti G. Balachandran, History, Colgate University
  58. Barbara L. Regenspan, Educational Studies, Colgate University
  59. Deborah J. Knuth Klenck, English, Colgate University
  60. Suzanne B. Spring, Writing & Rhetoric, Colgate University
  61. Cristina Serna, Women’s Studies, Colgate University
  62. Joel Bordeaux, Religion, Colgate University
  63. Mark Stern, Educational Studies, Colgate University
  64. Susan Thomson, Peace and Conflict Studies, Colgate University
  65. Kapil Mandrekar, Environmental and Forest Biology, SUNY-ESF
  66. Jackie Orr, Sociology, Syracuse University

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4. In solidarity with JNU: University of Oxford members, alumni

We, the undersigned members and alumni of the University of Oxford, stand firmly in solidarity with fellow students, teachers and scholars at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU). We condemn the ongoing persecution of the student community in JNU, in particular the arrest of JNU Students Union (JNUSU) president Kanhaiya Kumar under sedition charges. We protest the use of institutional and state machinery to stifle dissent on campuses, and the attempt to persecute those whose views do not conform to the narrow narratives of ‘nationalism’, ‘nationhood’ and ‘Indian culture’ promoted and endorsed by the ruling party. We view the crackdown in JNU in a continuum with the use of state machinery to clamp down on dissenting views and ideologies on campuses, most prominently at the FTII, Jadavpur University, IIT-Madras and the University of Hyderabad (UoH). We would like to point out that it was a similar witchhunt, backed by state authority, that led to the suicide of Dalit scholar and student leader of the Ambedkar Students’ Association, Rohith Vemula. We also stand in solidarity with the ongoing rally hunger strike at UoH and the struggles of the Joint Action Committee for Social Justice, demanding justice for Rohith Vemula.

We are concerned that sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) have been used to criminalise dissent. University campuses are meant to provide spaces for deliberation and even disagreement; the abuse of the law in order to stifle students’ voices is indicative of an authoritarian state’s attempts to ideologically capture the university space. Further, we believe that Section 124-A of the IPC, which codifies the law on sedition, is fundamentally anachronistic to a democratic state. Even so, for a charge of sedition to be made out, the law requires that violence must necessarily follow subversive speech, which is conspicuously absent in this case.

We are distressed by reported violence targeting students, professors and journalists on the premises of the Patiala House Court, both inside and outside the courtroom, on February 15 and 17, 2016. We urge all responsible parties, including the police and court personnel, to fulfill their constitutional duty in ensuring a fair and secure trial. That this happened under the silent watch of the police and other authorities, is indicative of their complicity. We are also concerned about the profiling and vilification of certain students by sections of the media; for instance, the irresponsible media reportage on JNU student Umar Khalid is a grave point of concern.

We condemn the continued police presence in the JNU campus. We appeal to the government and police to understand us, first, as a broad spectrum of students, who believe in different ideologies, but come together to demand the right to hold these independent beliefs without the threat of state sanctioned violence. We believe that the idea of India, as a multifarious nation, cannot and must not be held ransom by the hyper-nationalism of a particular group. Protecting the university space, where the critical spirit of questioning is nurtured, must remain of utmost importance to any democratic state. These events have, in effect, become a vicious attack on more than just the freedom of expression, speech and ideation guaranteed to us by the Constitution of India. We admire JNU’s resilience, and we stand with JNU in this moment of crisis, as a mark of our commitment to the freedom of thought and action and in support of the freedom from fear — of the state, surveillance and pernicious political control.


1.Umika Pidaparthy, MSc Social Science of the Internet, 2015-2016

2.Amrita Sengupta, MSc Social Science of the Internet, 2015-16

3.Deepa Kurup, MPhil candidate, Oxford Department of International Development

4.Baisali Mohanty, MSc Contemporary India, School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies

5.Jayesha M. Koushik, MPhil Development Studies, 2015-2017

6.Divya David, MSc Contemporary India, 2014-15

7.Yasser Shams Khan, DPhil English, 2015-2019

8.Mansi Sood, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-16

9.Gala Pouzanov, MPhil English Studies

10.Payaswini Tailor, MPhil Politics, Department of Politics and International Relations

11.Sanya Samtani, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

12.Varun Ramesh, MSc. in Contemporary India, 2016

13.Natasha Maru, MPhil in Development Studies 2016

14.Padmini Gopal, MSc Contemporary India, 2016

15.Lipika Kamra, DPhil, Department of International Development

16.Sneha Krishnan, DPhil Development Studies, 2015

17.Tara Greig, DPhil in British History

18.Gabriella Crimi, MPhil in Development Studies, 2017

19.Kalyani Madhura Ramachandran, MPhil Anthropology, 2015

20.Onaiza Drabu, MSc Social Anthropology, 2016

21.Niyati Sharma, D.Phil English, 2014-2017

22.Rumi Pegu, MSc. in Contemporary India, 2015-16

23.Yussef Robinson, BA History and Politics

24.Jinal Dadiya, Bachelor of Civil Law 2015-16

25.Carl Ohman, MSc in Social Science of the Internet, 2015-2016

26.Sneha Menon, MPhil Economics, 2015

27.David Adler, MPhil Politics, 2017

28.Alice Lepeuple, MSc in Political Theory Research, 2015-2016

29.Gitanjali Keshava, Bachelor of Civil Law 2015-2016

30.Deniz Duru Aydin, MSc Candidate, 2015-16

31.Sonali Chowdhry, Candidate for MPhil Economics, 2015-2017

32.Harendar Neel, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

33.Aisha Ahmad, MPhil Development Studies, 2017

34.Lakshmy Venkatesh, MSt Archaeology, 2016

35.Ashwin Menon, MSc Education, 2015-16

36.Challenger Mishra, D.Phil. in Theoretical Physics, 2011

37.Paris Zhao, Oxford Internet Institute, 2016

38.Prerna Bakshi, Msc Global Governance and Diplomacy

39.Anne Payne, MSt Global & Imperial History 2016

40.Amit Kumar, D.Phil Candidate Chemistry

41.Amba Uttara Kak, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

42.L Molloy, DPhil Social Science of the Internet

43.Ashley Pople, MSc in Economics for Development, 2015-2016

44.Rebecca Byrnes, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

45.Leo Boonzaier, DPhil (Law) student

46.Dr Rahul Gandhi, BSc (Neuroscience), MBChB, Member, Royal Australasian College of Physicians, Fulbright Awardee, MBA University of Oxford 2015-16

47.Dr. Bhaskar Bhushan, DPhil Organic Chemistry, 2010-2014

48.Dr. Aakashi Bhatt, MSc Clinical Embryology, 2015-2016

49.Jose Ignacio Morales, Magister Juris, 2015-2016

50.Anisha Sharma, DPhil Economics, 2011-16

51.Jessica Glennie, MSc Environmental Change and Management, 2015

52.Shannon Philip, D.Phil International Development

53.Leonie Hoffmann, PPE, 2014

54.Mayanka Mukherji, MPhil in Visual, Material and Museum Anthropology, 2015

55.Seham Areff, MSc Global Governance and Diplomacy, 2015-2016

56.Tushar Menon, DPhil in Philosophy

57.Natalya Din-Kariuki, DPhil Candidate in English, 2013

58.Utkarsh Bhatnagar

59.Richa Sinha, ECM

60.Diptasri Basu, Master of Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government, 2015-2016

61.Vimal Balasubramaniam, DPhil (Candidate), Said Business School

62.Subhashish Bhadra, M. Phil. In Economics

63.Teja Varma Pusapati, D.Phil Student in English

64.Neelakshi Tewari, M.Sc. Education, 2015

65.Fran Green-Armytage, Chemistry

66.Geetanjali Sharma

67.Rakesh Sharma, DPhil, 2009

68.Nikhil M. Pandhi, M.Phil Archeology

69.Julian Pohl, MPhil in Politics

70.Priyanka Mehra, MSc Contemporary India

71.Ria Kapoor, D.Phil History, 2015

72.Charlie Tyson, MSc History of Science, Medicine, and Technology, 2016

73.Ned Dostaler, MPhil Medical Anthropology, 2015

74.Deeksha Manchanda, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2013

75.Martin Pastor, Magister Juris, 2016

76.Garima Singh, MSc Environmental Change and Management, 2014-15

77.Andrew Wheeler, MSc in Economics for Development, 2016

78.Emile Rolland, Mst. Modern South Asian Studies Postgraduate

79.Marlena Valles, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

80.Amogha Varsha, DPhil, 2010-14

81.Cannelle Gueguen-Teil, MPhil Development Studies, 2015-17

82.Gautam Bondada, D.Phil Archaeology, 2012-17

83.Faiza Rahman , Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-16

84.Meghan Finn, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-16

85.Tyler Overton, MPhil Development Studies, 2015-16

86.Manish Kushwaha, D.Phil. Biochemistry, 2006-10

87.Aban Haq, MPhil Development Studies, 2015-17

88.Abhinav, Bachelor of Business Administration, 2012-15

89.Lakshmi Neelakantan, MSc Evidence-Based Social Intervention and Policy Evaluation, 2015-16

90.Devony Schmidt, MPhil European Politics & Society, 2014-2016

91.Ellie Marshall, MSc Social Science of the Internet, 2014-2015

92.Joseph Barrett, MPhil in Economic and Social History, 2017

93.Chetna Shrivastava, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

94.Souktik Roy, BA-MMath, 2014

95.Sai Gourisankar, MSt Global and Imperial History, 2015

96.Kaushal Vidyarthee, MPhil in Development Studies, 2006-08

97.Andrea Wright, MSc Physics 2016

98.Debasmita Padhi, MSc Economics for Development, 2015-16

99.Rachael Midlen, MPhil Development Studies, 2014-2016

100.Pavithra Srinivasan, MSc Social Anthropology, 2013-14

101.Anders Møller, MPhil Development Studies, 2014-2016

102.Sana Moyeen, MPhil Development Studies, 2015-17

103.Byron Gray, M.Phil in Social Anthropology, 2012-2014

104.Prerna Bakshi, Msc. Global Governance and Diplomacy, 2015-16

105.Achas Burin, Dphil, 2015)

106.Vincent Wolff Zahner, Master of Public Policy, 2015-16

107.Arpita Varghese, MSc Global Governance and Diplomacy, 2015-16

108.Shreya Atrey, DPhil (Law), Bachelor of Civil Law, 2011-15

109.Garima Jaju, DPhil International Development, 2015-18

110.Soumya Mishra, DPhil International Development 2015

111.Vasudha Sharma, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

112.Anshumali Nilesh, MSc Mathematics and Foundations of Computer Science, 2015-16

113.Abhilasha Joshi, DPhil Neuroscience, 2013-2017

114.Udit Bhatia, DPhil Political Theory, 2014- 17

115.Santanu Bhattacharya, Master of Public Policy, 2015-2016

116.Arindam Banerjee, Master of Public Policy, 2015-16

117.Faraz Janan, DPhil Engineering, 2014

118.Nicholas Letchford, DPhil Mathematics, 2013-2016

119.Sunniva Melhuus, MPhil Politics, 2014-16

120.Judith Dada, MSc Social Science of the Internet

121.Gayathri Balan, Master of Business Administration, 2015-2016

122.Dhruti Babariya, DPhil Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 2013-17

123.Tariq Parker, Msc Neuroscience, 2015-16

124.Richard Kendall, MPhil Classical Archaeology, 2014-16

125.Kayla Svoboda, MPhil in Development Studies, 2016

126.Josephine Mahony, DPhil Environmental Sciences, 2015-2019

127.HF Ryan DPhil Archaeology

128.Nicole Beardsworth MSc African Studies 2012/13

129.Eden Bailey, MSt Musicology, 2015-16

130.Shalmalee Ghate MPhil Development Studies, 2016-17

131.Anna Baird, Lit Hum BA, 2017

132.Md Adil Hossain, DPhil International Development, 2014

133.Min Zha, MSc Education, 2015

134.Ayush Ranjan, MSc. in Contemporary India, 2015-16

135.Indigo Hope Wilde, BFA Fine Art, 2014

136.Chandrashekar Madaiah, MSc Physics, 2002-2005

137.Arthur (Eirich), MPhil Social Anthropology, 2015-16

138.Matthew Eric Garret, MPhil 2015

139.Devanshi Shah, CS Exec, B.Com

140.Aneil Jaswal, DPhil Public Health, 2016

141.Shrochis Karki, DPhil International Development (2011-2015)

142.Vanshica Kant (M.St Global & Imperial History, 2013-14)

143.Ankita Pandey D. Phil Candidate

144.Sa’eed Husaini, DPhil International Development, 2015

145.Sahana Ghosh, MPhil Migration Studies, 2008-10

146.Aranyani Bhargav, Msc Contenporary India, 2009-10

147.Ayudh Reyaz , M.Arch , 2012-17

148.Shagun Gupta/MSc Global Governance and Diplomacy/2014-2015

149.Zakir Hossain Majumder, Grad Student (PhD), Interdisciplinary Humanities, University of California, Merced

150.Dhvani Mehta (Bachelor of Civil Law, 2010; M.Phil Law, 2011; D.Phil Candidate Law)

151.Bhumi Purohit, MSc Contemporary India 2014-2015

152.Akanksha Awal, D.Phil (Anthropology) 2014

153.Swati Janu, MSUD, 2013-15

154.Diwita Mathivanan; MA History 2015-Present

155.Ratika Yumnam, MSc Contemporary India 2013-2014

156.Gayeti Singh (Msc Contemporary South Asian Studies) (2009-10)

157.Ankana Das, MA English 2016

158.Mezna Qato (DPhil History)

159.Nirad Vidrohi/MA, Development, 2015-2017

160.VRO Student 2014-2015

161.Gael Sirello, VRO BA PPE, 2014-2015

162.Sakshi, B.C.L. (2014-15)

163.James Nottage, BA History & Politics (2010), MSc Contemporary India (2014)

164.Lakshmee Sharma, MSc Social Anthropology 2014-15

165.Saurabh Mishra DPhil History (2005-08)

166.Fergus Peace, BPhil Philosophy 2015-7

167.Konpal Kaur Mphil archaeology 2015-17

168.Prerona Prasad, Modern History Department

169.Ilunga Mpyana, Master of Public Policy, 2015-2016

170.Abigail Desmond, MPhil Archaeology, 2015-2017

171.Jaskiran Chohan, MSc Latin American Studies, Latin America Centre, 2013-2014

172.Amaal Akhtar, Msc Contemporary India, 2014-15

173.Debasmita Deb, PhD student, Women’s Studies, 2013

174.Vanya Vaidehi Bhargav, D.Phil History, (2013-)

175.Anica Mann-Kapur, Mphil Classical Indian Religion, 2013-15

176.Lofred Madzou, MSc in Social Science of the Internet (2015-2016)

177.Arijeet Pal (Research Fellow, Theoretical Physics)

178.Raag Yadava (MPhil, Law, 2015-16)

179.Joe Hayns-Worthington Dphil Anthropology 2011-2016

180.Anisha Gururaj, MSc in Global Governance and Diplomacy, 2016.

181.Corinne Cattekwaad, Alumni (MSc in Social Science of the Internet) 2014 – 15

182.Jem Jones, CAAH Classics, 2013-16

183.Amar Sohal (DPhil. History, 2015-18)

184.Musab Younis, DPhil International Relations, 2013-16

185.Kiran Benipal, Literae Humaniores, 2018-19

186.Farheen Ahmed (BA, jurisprudence; 2014-17)

187.Dalia Gebrial, MSt. World Literatures, 2015-2016

188.Vivian Holmes, MMathPhil Mathematics & Philosophy 2013-17

189.Lucy Hirst, BA Classics 2014-2015

190.Aliya Yule, PPE, 2017

191.Priyanka deSouza MSc Environmental Change and Management 2013

192.Madeleine Norman, Classics, 2013-18

193.Tim Pfefferle, MSc Global Governance and Diplomacy, Department for International Development, 2016

194.T Khaitan, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2004

195.Jacob Armstrong BA English and Modern Language (GER), 2014

196.Mili Malde, Classics, BA Classics, 3rd year

197.Vinayak Uppal MSc. Economics for Development, 2009

198.Kate Tunstall, Faculty (Modern Languages)

199.Mihika Chatterjee, DPhil, 2015

200.Gil Chambers, Materials Science, Department of Materials, 1st

201.Arushi Garg, D Phil in Law,

202.Yasser Shams Khan, DPhil English, 2015-2019

203.Tanyah Hameed, MPhil Comparative Social Policy, Dept of Social Policy and Intervention

204.S Iravani, BA. English

205.David Bowe, DPhil, Medieval and Modern Languages

206.Nils Rochowicz, MPhil Economics 2015

207.Sachin Croker, BA English Language and literature, 2013

208.Nazmus Tareque, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-16

209.Nomfundo Ramalekana, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-2016

210.Kristin Grogan, DPhil English, 2014

211.Ananthi Al Ramiah, DPhil Experimental Psychology, 2009

212.Lindsay Lee (Master of Public Policy 2015)

213.Chi Chi Shi, MPhil. Political Theory, 2nd year

214.Ndjodi Ndeunyema (Bachelor of Civil Law) 2015/2016

215.Divyanshi Chugh (MSc. Comparative Social Policy, Department of Social Policy), Batch 2014-2015

216.Simukai Chigudu, DPhil in International Development, 2016

217.Felix Binder, DPhil Physics

218.Benjamin Abraham, DPhil Public Policy. year 1

219.Ela Naegele, MSc. Political Theory, 2014

220.Rebecca Dixon, MPhil in Development Studies 2012-2014

221.Namratha Rao, DPhil English 2015 – 2018

222.Arev Papazian, MPhil. Social Anthropology, 2015-2016

223.Sanchari Dutta, DPhil History, 2007

224.Aidan Hocking, MSt. Global and Imperial History, 2014-15

225.Geoffrey Yeung, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2016

226.Marc Shi Msc. Social Policy and Intervention

227.Bernard Soubry, M.Phil in Environmental Change and Management, 2015

228.Rui Barbosa (Research Assistant, Computer Science)

229.Kirti Mahapatra, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2012-13

230.Alba Kapoor BA History and Politics

231.Kate Nussenbaum, MSc. (Res) Experimental Psychology, 2017

232.Emily Blease, MPhil Anthropology

233.Simon-Chevarie-Cossette, DPhil. Philosophy, 2014

234.Max Harris, Bachelor of Civil Law and Master of Public Policy (2012-2014)

235.Samuel Demharter, DPhil Computer Science, 4th year

236.Swathi Swaminathan, MSc Psychological Research

237.Raphael Chaskalson, MSc in Economic and Social History, 2015/16

238.Ritika Tewari, MSc. Global Governance and Diplomacy, 2015

239.Sujit Thomas, MPhil Modern British and European History 2012-14

240.Ntokozo Qwabe (MSc. African Studies, 2016)

241.Eleonora Serra, MSt. Linguistics, year 2013-2014

242.Arwa Awan, Visiting Undergrad, History and Politics

243.Elizabeth Dann, BA, Medieval and Modern Languages, 3rd year

244.Marija Pantelic, DPhil Social Policy and Intervention, 2013

245.Vanessa Gerber [MSc Environmental Change & Management]

246.Jack Doyle, DPhil History, 2017

247.Prateek Jain (Masters of Business Administration, 2016)

248.Salmoli Choudhuri, Bachelor of Civil Law, 2015-16

249.Ms. Ranu Sinha, M.Phil in Geography and the Environment, Department of Geography and the Environment, October 2014 – 2016

250.Vindhya Srinivasamani, Bachelor of Civil Laws, 2012-13

251.Anirudh Mathur, BA Hons PPE, 2014

252.Anupama Kumar, Bachelor of Civil Law (2013-14) and MSt Archaeology (2014-15)

253.Alex Diwa, DPhil Clinical Medicine

254.Vikaran Khanna, DPhil. Physics, 2010

255.Matt Broomfield, BA English Language & Literature, 2015

256.Abhishek Bhattacharyya. B.A. English Language and Literature. Christ Church. Matriculation: 2009.

257.Ayyaz Mallick, MBiochem, Alumnus Oriel College

258.Sanober Umar, MSc Anthropology and International Development

259.Chandrika Prasad Verma, PhD., Centre of Social Medicine and Community Health JNU

260.Aditi Vyas, MSc. History of Science, Medicine and Technology, Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine, 2007

261.Marisa Macari, DPhil Anthropology, 2013

262.Arbind K Chaudhary

263.Shruthi, History, First Year

264.Nora Bardelli, DPhil International Development, 2014

265.Richard Toppo MSc. Contemporary India 2013

266.Sarabe Chan (MA Poverty and Development, IDS) 2015-16

267.Alexandra Reza, MPhil. International Relations, 2015

268.Kalina Naidoo, Masters by Research in Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, 1st Year.

269.Drasko Kascelan, MSc Applied Linguistics and Second Language Acquisition, Department of Education, 2014

270.Jess Rahman MSt Women’s Studies

271.Ryan Daniels, DPhil Zoology, 2015

272.Kate Stewart, BA English, 2nd Year

273.Madalina Ciocanu, Anthropology, 2017

274.charlotte Linton, Mphil Visual, Material and Museum Anthropology, 2016

275.Rosie Fraser BA Spanish and Portuguese First Year

276.Nils Karl Reimer, MSc in Psychological Research, 2014

277.Shohini Sengupta, MSc in Law and Finance, 2015

278.Fadiah Nadwa, Mst International Human Rights Law, 2015

279.Crea O’Hanlon MPhil Russian and East European Studies

280.Zheng Guan, MSt. Global and Imperial History, 2015/6

281.Chris Whitehouse, BA History & Politics, First Year

282.Lucy Graham, D.Phil., graduated 2011

283.Tyler Journeaux Graham, M.St. Philosophical Theology, Department of Theology and Religion, first year (2015-2016)

284.Anwesha Sengupta, MPhil. Modern South Asian Studies

285.Sarah Bufkin, DPhil in Politics

286.Alex MacFarlane, DPhil Oriental Studies 2019

287.Amaal Akhtar, MSc. Contemporary India (2015)

288.Jennifer van Leijen-Cowasji Alumni of Utrecht University and the University of East London

289.Emma Brunskill-Powell, MSc Comparative Social Policy, 2016

290.Shahnawaz Ali Raihan, Dphil in History (2013-16)

Student Societies and Institutions

291.Rhodes Must Fall

292.Corpus Christi College Equal Opportunities Committee

293.Oxford University Student Union’s Campaign for Racial Awareness and Equality

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5. Statement in support of the teaching and student community of Jawaharlal Nehru University (by Japanese scholars working on India)

(This statement is issued in our individual capacities, and does not represent the opinion of any institution.)

We, the undersigned members from various educational, research and teaching institutions in Japan are deeply concerned and disturbed by the recent situation in Jawaharlal Nehru University.

As a premier institution of learning in the world, JNU has made very significant contributions to teaching and research. It has research collaborations with academic institutions all over the world, and is celebrated as an important and vibrant space for critical thinking and democratic expression. Unfortunately in consequence of recent events these values, collaborations, and the reputation of Jawaharlal Nehru University appear to be under threat.

In this difficult hour, we request the Indian government to uphold the freedom of speech that is essential to any national institution of Higher Education and ask that they endeavour to ensure the continued autonomy and functioning of the University.


  1. Rohan D’Souza, Associate Professor, Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University
  2. Akio Tanabe, Professor, Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University
  3. Aya Ikegame, Associate Professor, Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia, the University of Tokyo
  4. Etsuro Ishigami, Professor, Faculty of Commerce, Fukuoka University
  5. Fumiko Oshikawa, Japanese Association of South Asian Studies, Emeritus Professor, Kyoto University
  6. Kazuya Nakamizo, Associate Professor, Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University
  7. Ines G. Zupanov, Professor/Director, Centre d’etudes de l’Inde et Asie du Sud (CNRS-EHESS), Paris (currently visiting professor at Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia, the University of Tokyo)
  8. Jun Obi, Lecturer, The Faculty of Intenational Relations, Daitobunka University
  9. Ayumu, Yasutomi, Professor, Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia, the University of Tokyo
  10. Kyoko Matsukawa, Associate Professor, Faculty of Letters, Konan University
  11. Atsushi Kato, Professor, School of Business, Aoyama Gakuin University
  12. Tsukasa, Mizushima, Professor, Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, Tokyo University
  13. Sae Nakamura, Research Associate, Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University
  14. Yu Sasaki, Independent Scholar.
  15. Heiji Nakamura, Emeritus Professor, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
  16. Mari Miyamoto, Newton Fellow, SOAS South Asia Institute, SOAS
  17. Makiko Kimura, Associate Professor, Department of International and Cultural Studies, Tsuda College
  18. Kenta Funahashi, Research Associate, Center for the Study of Contemporary India, Ryukoku University

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6. Statement of solidarity by Noam Chomsky, Orhan Pamuk, and others

We have learnt of the shameful act of the Indian government which, invoking sedition laws formulated by India’s colonial rulers, ordered the police to enter the Jawaharlal Nehru University campus and unlawfully arrest a student leader, Mr. Kanhaiya Kumar, on charges of inciting violence –without any proof whatever of such wrongdoing on his part.

From the reports of a large number of witnesses and the most highly respected journalists in the country, these are the known facts that no impartial observer denies: In a student meeting, acting well within the rights he possesses by the law of the land, Mr. Kumar spoke critically of the BJP government’s policies. On the previous day, at some other event which he had no part in organising and at which he did not speak, a handful of other students, not even identifiable as students of the university, were shouting slogans about the rights of Kashmiris to independence from Indian military oppression over the last many decades.  Mr. Kumar, whose speech (widely available on a video) cannot in any way be connected with the slogans uttered on the previous day, was nonetheless arrested for ‘anti-national’ behaviour and for violating the sedition laws against the incitement to violence. Since there is no evidence to establish these charges, we can only conclude that this arrest is further evidence of the present government’s deeply authoritarian nature, intolerant of any dissent, setting aside India’s longstanding commitment to toleration and plurality of opinion, replicating the dark times of an oppressive colonial period and briefly of the Emergency in the mid-1970s.

These actions of the police have brought great dishonour to the government; and the failure of the Vice-Chancellor to speak out against these actions and moreover to allow the suspension of seven other students on charges that have not been established by a fair and transparent inquiry, will bring great dishonour to the most prominent university in the country in the eyes of the academy all over the world.

We, the undersigned, take a stand of heartfelt solidarity with the students and faculty of Jawaharlal Nehru University in their efforts to resist these developments on its campus and, in the name of the liberties that India and Indian universities until recently could take for granted, we not only condemn the culture of authoritarian menace that the present government in India has generated, but urge all those genuinely concerned about the future of India and Indian universities to protest in wide mobilisation against it.

Signed by:

  1. Noam Chomsky, Emeritus Professor of Linguistics and Philosophy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
  2. Orhan Pamuk, Nobel Laureate, Turkey
  3. Jonathan Cole, Former Provost of Columbia University, USA
  4. Judith Butler, Professor of Linguistics, University of California, Berkeley
  5. Richard N. Zare, Professor of Chemistry, Stanford University, USA
  6. Robert Wade, Professor of International Development, London School of Economics, UK
  7. Akeel Bilgrami, Professor of Philosophy, Columbia University, USA
  8. Dimitri Papadimitriou, Director, Levy Institute, Bard College, USA
  9. Mriganka Sur, Professor of Neuroscience, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
  10. Jan Breman, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, Amsterdam University, The Netherlands,
  11. Sanat Kumar, Professor of Chemical Engineering, Columbia University, USA
  12. Sheldon Pollock, Professor of Sanskrit, Columbia University, USA
  13. Barbara Harriss-White, Emerita Professor of Development Studies, Oxford University, UK
  14. Partha Chatterjee, Professor of Anthropology, Columbia University, USA.
  15. N. V. Ramana, Professor of Physics, Princeton University, USA
  16. James Galbraith, Professor of Economics, University of Texas at Austin, USA
  17. Charles Taylor, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, McGill University, Canada
  18. Servaas Storm, Professor of Economics, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
  19. Arjun Appadurai, Professor of Media, Culture and Communication, New York University, USA.
  20. Alicia Puyana Mutis, Professor of Economics, Flacso, Mexico.
  21. Robert Pollin, Professor of Economics, University of Amherst at Massachusetts, USA
  22. Juan Carlos Moreno Brid, Professor of Economics, Universidad National de Mexico, USA
  23. Gerald Epstein, Professor of Economics, University of Amherst at Massachusetts, USA
  24. Pasuk Phongpaichit, Emerita Professor, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok Thailand.
  25. Kanti Rai, leading leukemia specialist, USA
  26. Gauri Vishwanathan, Professor of English, Columbia University, USA
  27. Ha-Joon Chang, University of Cambridge, UK
  28. Jennie Traschen, Professor of Physics, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, USA
  29. David Kastor, Associate Head of Department of Physics, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, USA
  30. Ugo Pagano, Professor of Economics, Università degli Studi di Siena, Italy
  31. Mira Nair, Film Director
  32. Ozlem Onaran, Professor of Economics, University of Greenwich, UK
  33. Engelbert Stockhammer, Professor of Economics, University of Bristol, UK
  34. Gary Dymski, Professor of Applied Economics, University of Leeds, UK
  35. Arjun Jayadev, University of Massachusetts, Boston, USA.
  36. Elissa Braunstein, Colorado State University, USA
  37. Alicia Giron, Universidad National de Mexico, USA
  38. Daniele Tori, University of Greenwich, UK
  39. Pablo Bortz, Universirty of San Martin, Beunos Aires, Argentina
  40. Daniela Gabor, UWE Bristol, UK
  41. Annina Kaltenbrunner, University of Leeds, UK
  42. J.George Waardenburg, Emeritus professor in development economics at Erasmus University, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
  43. Fernando J. Cardim de Carvalho, Emeritus Professor, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
  44. Mario Tonveronachi, Università degli Studi di Siena, Italy
  45. Jan Kregel, Director of Research, Levy Institute, Bard College, USA
  46. Thomas Ferguson, University of Massachusetts, Boston, USA
  47. Malcolm Sawyer, Emeritus Professor of Economics, University of Leeds, UK
  48. Thea Harvey-Barratt, Levy Institute, Bard College, USA
  49. Amrita Chhachhi, International Institute of Social Studies, The Hague Netherlands
  50. Noemi Levy, Universidad National de Mexico, USA
  51. Ilhan Dogus, University of Hamburg, Germany
  52. Edward Fullbrook, Executive Director, World Economics Association
  53. Brendan Burchell, University of Cambridge, UK
  54. Vamsi Vakulabharanam, Professor of Economics, University of Amherst at Massachusetts, USA
  55. Sripad Motiram, University of Massachusetts at Bosto, USA
  56. Stefano Zambelli, Universita di Trento, Italy
  57. Andrew B. Tylecote, Emeritus Professor, University of Sheffield, UK
  58. Jing Cai, University of Aberdeen, Scotland
  59. Julian Wells, Kingston University, UK
  60. Mehmet Kerem Coban, Lee Kuan Yew Institute of Public Policy, National University of Singapore
  61. Andres Lazzarini, University of San Martin, Argentina
  62. Radha Upadhyaya, University of Nairobi, Kenya
  63. Riccardo Bellofiors, Universita di Bergamo, Italy
  64. Carolina Alves, University of London
  65. Pritam Singh, Oxford Brookes University, UK
  66. Stephanie Seguino, University of Vermont, USA
  67. Nicolas Pons-Vignon, EHSS, Paris
  68. Sergio Cesarotto, Universita di Siena, Italy
  69. Tomas Rotta, University of Greenwich, UK
  70. Robin Blackburn, Cullman Fellow, New York Public Library
  71. David Freedberg, Director, Warburg Institute, University of London
  72. Mario Seccareccia, University of Ottowa, Canada
  73. Jens Lerche, University of London, UK
  74. Kevin Gallagher, Boston University, USA
  75. Maria Cristina Marcuzzo, Università di Roma “La Sapienza”, Italy
  76. Pascal Petit, University of Sorbonne, Paris France
  77. Deepankar Basu, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA.
  78. María Cecilia Ainciburu, Università degli Studi di Siena, Italy
  79. Eugenia Correa, Universidad Nacional de Mexico, Mexico City
  80. Wendy Olsen, Professor of Socio-Economics, University of Manchester, UK
  81. Radhika Balakrishnan, Rutgers University, USA
  82. Eduardo Strachman, Sao Paulo State University, Brazil
  83. Wesley Colin Marshall, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Iztapalapa, Mexico
  84. Trevor Evans, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Germany
  85. Terrence McDonough, National University of Ireland, Galway
  86. Rod O’Donnell, University of Sydney, Australia

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7. Stanford University extends solidarity to JNU

We, the undersigned students, alumni, and faculty of Stanford University, stand in solidarity with students and faculty of JNU. We strongly condemn the unconstitutional and undemocratic arrest of Kanhaiya Kumar and the continuing police action on the JNU campus. We demand that the government release Kanhaiya Kumar immediately, and drop all charges against him. We demand the cessation of all legal proceedings against Umar Khalid, Rama Naga, Anant Prakash, Ashutosh Kumar and Anirban Bhattacharya, and that they be provided security against the violence of the Hindu Right.

During the past week, we followed the state’s use of archaic colonial laws of sedition to clamp down on political dissent. We were dismayed by the JNU administration’s complicity in allowing the police to enter campus and search hostels goes against the autonomy of the university, which was designed precisely to ensure freedom of political dissent. The continuing action by the JNU administration against students reveals their complicity with the Hindu Right. The Indian mass media’s demonisation of student political activity has not only carried and propagated the state’s autocratic brief, but has granted legitimacy to the ensuing violence against students. The subsequent attacks on students and faculty at the Patiala House court by goons dressed as lawyers confirmed the nexus between the state, Hindu Right, and administrative bodies (such as the one at JNU university).

The events at JNU are not unique. They are one amongst a series of larger attempts to curb freedoms, by outlawing political organizations including those on campus, as well as slowly undermine central educational institutions which accelerates the shift towards privatisation of education. In Kanhaiya Kumar’s arrest on the ludicrous charge of sedition, we hear echoes of the temporary derecognition of the Ambedkar-Periyar Study Circle at IIT-Madras, and the institutional murder of Rohith Vemula. In those instances too, we saw the presence of the state-Hindu Right-university nexus that curbed political freedom.

As our friends at the University of Chicago noted in their solidarity statement, the nationalism advocated by the Hindu Right is predicated on imagining an enemy. “Its political program imagines the citizen as upper caste, heterosexual, male, Hindu; its economic program necessitates a blind faith in neoliberalism; and its social program continually imagines an enemy – the Muslim, the Dalit, the Left.” It is this imagined “enemy” of the Hindu Right that faces the risk of being labelled “anti-national” every time there is political dissent. We protest the actions of  the present BJP government because we do not agree with them that only upper-caste heterosexual, Hindu men are entitled to citizenship rights. This is a dire situation for us, the citizens of India, that demands we rally around the specific case of JNU even as we resist the larger project of the Hindu Right. We would do well to bear in mind Kanhaiya Kumar’s reminder that “we don’t need a certificate of patriotism from the RSS.”

As students and teachers, we value above all freedom of thought and action. We cherish the space for critical thinking, open discourse and political dissent that universities offer. Opening up room for disagreement and the free flow of ideas is not a by-product of the educational process, but its very essence.

We, the undersigned students, alumni, and faculty of Stanford University, stand in solidarity with the students and faculty of JNU.

Signed by:

  1. Megha Patnaik, PhD Student, Department of Economics
  2. Mayukh Samanta, MS&E alumnus, Class of 2015
  3. Jisha Menon, Associate Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies, Dept. of Theater and Performance Studies
  4. Vivek V. Narayan, Graduate Student, Dept. of Theater and Performance Studies
  5. Thomas Blom Hansen, Reliance-Dhirubhai Ambani Professor in South Asian Studies and Professor in Anthropology; Director, Stanford’s Center for South Asia
  6. Sadhana Senthilkumar, Undergraduate Student
  7. Rush Rehm, Professor, Dept. of Theater and Performance Studies, and Classics; and Artistic Director, Stanford Repertory Theater (SRT)
  8. Trisha Shetty, Undergraduate Student
  9. Shiv Vadivelalagan, Dept. of International Policy Studies
  10. Anunay Kulshrestha, Undergraduate Student
  11. Luladay Price, Undergraduate Student
  12. Anubha Anushree, Dept. of History
  13. Japsimran Kaur, Undergraduate Student
  14. Milind Rao, Graduate student, Department of Electrical Engineering
  15. Adeel Arif, MS, MS&E ’12
  16. Asha Chigurupati, Stanford Alumnus, Class of 2015
  17. Melanie Rodrigues, Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Surgery

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8. Letter of solidarity with JNU students and faculty from professionals, academics and artists in West Bengal

The recent forceful and spectacular big-media injunction on debating and ‘intellectualising’ issues of nationhood and its summary recommendation of the strict enforcement of executive police rule as substitute of such debate has probably been etched deep in the minds of many a primetime news-viewer in our country. We, the undersigned, are writing this note to strongly disagree with this unsolicited injunction that seeks to exorcise all oppositional opinion and thus fundamentally imperils the practice of democracy in this country. This attempt at curbing strains of opposition lies also at the heart of the recent chain of reactions of the ruling coalition and the central government to a purportedly “cultural programme” which was to be held at JNU on the 9th of February to publicly discuss the question of Kashmiri self-determination. What follows in this note hopes to vindicate our right but also our duty to hold such oppositional views and presents our claims and demands concerning the recent series of events surrounding JNU.

As stated time and again, the intention of the students organising the event of 9th February was to continue the discussions and debates on Kashmir’s political character and on the morality of capital punishment in a civilised nation. We find the alarmism surrounding this event both after and before it was going to be held to be motivated by a sinister design. The sustenance of such debates in the public discourse of the nation-state is of course only to be expected as they were initiated by none other than the founding figures of the nation and the republic – Ambedkar, Gandhi, Tagore and Nehru. The central government’s decades-long policy of governing the region through a draconian law like the AFSPA is at odds with the basic principles of democracy and federalism. But the imposition of AFSPA also by itself draws attention to Kashmir’s specific status within the Indian union. The consequent circumstances of instability and mass discontent in the region provoke us constantly to interrogate the ‘mainstream’ nationalist resolution of the ‘Kashmir question’, especially because ‘Kashmir’ erupts and raises its ‘problematic’ head not so infrequently through news of militancy and militarism in our everyday life. Moreover, when school textbooks of history and political science in India still present Kashmir as a ‘problem’, it should not come as a surprise that the students of a premier university of the nation would also want to engage with this ‘problem’ in their own capacities.

In more recent times, no matter what its scale, the tumult in the public sphere after Afzal Guru’s hanging in 2013 re-invoked this already-existing public discourse. More recently, the ultra-nationalist organisations of our country such as the RSS/BJP have made their wish clear many a time to revoke the special status of Kashmir accorded by the article 370 of the Indian Constitution. Historically speaking, this is a view that does not enjoy the unanimous support of even the country’s political elite, let alone the masses, as for instance, Nehru himself repeatedly agreeing to the demand for a referendum on Kashmir. One must in such a situation ask under what circumstances the Indian nation-state acceded to the demand for a referendum on the question of self-determination of Kashmir at different conjunctures. Also, what made it backtrack from such a fundamental enunciation of popular sovereignty as a referendum that has been in wide practice the world over and most recently in United Kingdom and Scotland. Such more immediate circumstances clearly compel us to argue for keeping the debate concerning Kashmir alive in our public life. One may or may not support the Kashmiri demand for self-determination, but we do no doubt that the nation-state must at least acknowledge and accommodate the debates on this issue and has been doing so in certain ways for a long time now. How is it possible then to incriminate as ‘seditious’ the efforts by the concerned students at JNU to retrieve some such apparently forgotten questions of our democracy and rearticulate them in the current context of majoritarian assertions all over the nation?

We thus opine that the concerned JNU students were trying nothing exceptional but to continue to practice critical thinking about these problems inherent in the foundational structures of the nation-state in the form of a public programme. We affirm strongly both their rights as well as their intentions in doing so.

What seems to have become inextricably entangled with this latest version of public engagement with the ‘Kashmir debate’ is the problem of branding the ‘anti-national’. Not the greatest retrospection is required to perceive that this impromptu classificatory schema is of course not limited to debating the Kashmir issue. It goes well beyond that and has been shown in reports and opinions circulating about JNU to include beef-eating, ‘queer’ sexualities, dalit forms of worship, secular atheist thinking, advocacy of tribal rights and myriad other things. Such practices and opinions are being termed ‘anti-national’ even as the government seeks to allot and sell substantial national resources to big multi-national corporations and while the ruling party’s allies celebrate the spirit of Nathuram Godse, the murderer of the ‘Father of the Nation’.

The only ‘national’ or the ‘nationalist’ permitted and promoted by the ruling ideology of the BJP/RSS is the patriarchal-Brahmanical-upper class and all other forms which do not subscribe to this ideology are to be labelled, hunted, surveilled and ‘put down’ as ‘anti-nationals’ or even ‘terrorists’. The BJP leader who has been seen on camera thrashing and abusing the JNU professors and journalists at the Patiala Court, has justified his actions as ‘teaching a strict lesson to the anti-nationals’ and argued that the ‘anti-nationals’ should not only be beaten up, but there is no harm in killing them too! We condemn such heinous statements and provocations to mob-violence against the critics of the BJP/RSS and the current central government. To us, these statements seem more than empty threats at a time when M.M. Kalburgi, Gobind Pansare, Narendra Dabholkar, Rohith Vemula and Soni Sori – all faces of dissent – have indeed been murdered or harmed by ‘nationalist’ saffron terrorists.  

It then seems quite apparent to us that the use of the term ‘anti-national’ is the highest point of a frantic drive for Brahmanical cultural homogenisation of the nation by the BJP/RSS/ABVP. All difference and even the minimal articulation of dissent are now gradually being brought into the ambit of the ‘anti-national’ category. Added to this is the categorical denial of evidence and information rights by the highest offices of the country that is making ‘anti-national’ a surprisingly self-evident category beyond any interpretation. Thus the Home Ministry, in direct collusion often with certain big media channels has been of late firing a battery of baseless charges against university students most irresponsibly. This is lending further legitimacy and incitement to the quite well-organised mobocracy of the extended Sangh Parivar. The latter is quite easily finding further inspiration to disrupt essential legal procedures in courts and deal with ‘anti-nationals’ as they deem ‘fit’. This tactic of intimidation is duplicated by none other than the law enforcing agency i.e. the police. It is little wonder then that the National Human Rights Commission has already found out that a written statement made by Kumar in court was produced under pressure from the police. This brings back memories of Afzal Guru’s own confession that is claimed by some to have been extracted under duress by law enforcement.

In such circumstances, we would like to register our strong criticism of the most conceited ideological use of the term ‘anti-national’ in media and by the state to imbue images, videos and information with an immediacy of a judgment, thoroughly unfounded in most cases and leading up to direct forms of intimidation of dissenters with exemplary impunity. Within this kind of conceited use of the term ‘anti-national’ is embedded once again, an urgency to dismantle precisely those very pillars of public debate that lend strength to our democratic system and culture.

Recent events at JNU have also compelled us to contemplate on a much bigger question. For the Delhi police, a section of media, BJP/RSS – both the government executives and party leaders – and ABVP the act of organising a debate on Afzal Guru’s hanging in itself is an ‘anti-national’ act because it ‘questioned’ the decision finalised by the Supreme Court, the highest judicial body of the nation-state. In this context, we ask the following: Is having a difference of opinion with the apex court necessarily a ‘contempt of court’ even in strictly legal terms? Can such differing opinion be branded as ‘anti-national’ simply by way of its divergence from the court’s views? In a democracy, shouldn’t there be a space for debate on court verdicts too? Is it ‘anti-national’ or ‘anti-judiciary’ to extend the discourse on ‘justice’ beyond the immediate surroundings and formal networks of the judiciary? Does contemplating ‘justice’ in other forms and outside the arena of state-institutions always present a threat to ‘national sovereignty’ and are therefore to be declared ‘treason’?

In the context of increasing acts of ‘media trials’ orchestrated and ‘popular justice’ delivered, we want to strongly affirm that discussions and dialogues on the notion of ‘justice’, especially in respect to the question of ‘minority aspirations’, is utmost crucial for the future life of our democracy. All acts of ‘vengeance’ in the name of ‘justice’ must be condemned. Many eminent lawyers, scholars, Human Rights and civil society activists and Muslim clerics have questioned the gaping holes in the trial and appeal process of Afzal Guru as well as the gross violation of his constitutional rights and due legal processes in carrying out the punishment. One must not also forget here the absurdities of the present-day coalition politics of our nation: the so-called ‘nationalist’ BJP, which in Delhi is gunning for strong actions against the JNU students who organised the event in commemoration of the death of Afzal Guru and branding them ‘anti-nationals’, is in fact in an alliance with PDP in the Kashmir state assembly, the party which too eulogises Afzal Guru as a Kashmiri martyr! One must also take note of BJP’s silence on the issue of Balwant Singh Rajoana’s capital punishment – the Khalistani separatist who is accused for the 1995 assassination of the Punjab CM Beant Singh – against which another ally of them, the Akali Dal has already appealed!

We would like to further claim that the Judicial Process in India does not necessarily invite any kind of obvious foreclosure in its institutional functioning. Instead it fosters the potential for a certain degree of latitude in terms of appeals and amendments that are themselves co-dependent on the state of public debate in the country. We may debate on the most acceptable form of these debates or the style of their utterances, but we must never support the acts of forceful and even militarised suppressions or any kind of policing of them by the super-active executive with its totalitarian aspirations. These debates, we believe, aid in the process of strengthening institutions, procedures and meanings of justice. And it is in re-invoking this spirit of debate that we would want to register our own belief, however ‘fringe’ or ‘marginal’ that might sound: We are against the capital punishment – we do not think that a modern, civilised nation-state should have any legal right to kill its citizen, even if s/he is found to be engaged in ‘anti-national’ activities.

We want to also pose here one last important question thrown up by the events of the last few days – How can a nation-state ‘progress’ if it doesn’t keep amending its constitution according to changing circumstances and the demands of time and people? And how is that even possible without questioning the tenets of the existing constitution? Does that amount to being ‘anti-constitutional’? Then how is any change possible without being ‘anti-constitutional’ or ‘anti-national’? If so, aren’t many of the leaders of the ruling party also anti-nationals in as far as they want to revoke the special autonomous status of Kashmir granted by the Article 370 or argue in the parliament against the validity of the word ‘secular’ in Indian constitution as a descriptive character of the Indian nation-state. Leaving this question open here, let us clearly state our demands made in solidarity with the protesting teachers and students of JNU:

  • Revoke all cases of sedition or otherwise against all students of JNU
  • Revoke all disciplinary procedure and action against all students of JNU
  • Restore normalcy for students living in JNU and outside
  • Stop the witch-hunt of innocent students of Kashmiri and minority descent in Delhi and outside
  1. Priyankar Dey, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  2. Ritam Sengupta, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  3. Sayantan Saha Roy, University of Chicago
  4. Ritajyoti Bandyopadhyay, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  5. Iman Mitra, Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group
  6. Anwesha Sengupta. Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group and Jawaharlal Nehru University
  7. Sabyasachi Deb, Writer
  8. Ratna Deb, Retired school-teacher
  9. Asokendu Sengupta
  10. Ranabir Samaddar, Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group
  11. Paula Banerjee, University of Calcutta and Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group
  12. Moushumi Bhowmik, Singer and writer
  13. Neogi Sengupta, Barasat Government College
  14. Upal Chakrabarti, Presidency University
  15. Swati Chatterjee, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  16. Vikas Kumar Moola, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  17. Uday Bhanu Saini, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  18. Arunima Chakraborty, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  19. Richa Gupta, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  20. Chesta Arora, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  21. Rukmini Chakraborty, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  22. Anurupa Bhowmick, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  23. Tony Kurian, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  24. Santosh Sakhinala, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  25. Rajashree Bhattacharya, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  26. Debajyoti Mondal, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  27. Koyel Lahiri, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  28. Rohan Basu, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  29. Praskanva Sinharay, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  30. Ankur Tamuli Phukan, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta
  31. Arup Kumar Sen, Serampore College
  32. Subhadeep Sarker, Serampore College
  33. Jishnu Dasgupta, Serampore College
  34. Debajyoti Banerjee, Serampore College
  35. Sankha Das, Serampore College
  36. Moumie Banerjee, Serampore College
  37. Monideepa Bhattacharjee, Serampore College
  38. Samik Ray, Serampore College
  39. Arindam Dutta, Taki Government College
  40. Shubhankur Ghosh, Photographer
  41. Shan Bhattacharya, Researcher
  42. Antara Ray, Graphic designer
  43. Mimasa Pandit, St. Paul’s Cathedral Mission College
  44. Kaustubh Mani Sengupta, Bankura University
  45. Shrimoy Roy Chowdhury, Shiv Nadar University
  46. Anandaroop Sen, Jawaharlal Nehru University
  47. Twisha Deb, Photographer
  48. Ronny Sen, Photographer
  49. Arka Chattopadhyay, University of West Sydney
  50. Abhimanyu Kar, IIT Kharagpur
  51. Manjira Sinha, IIT Kharagpur
  52. Samata Biswas, Haldia Government College
  53. Shinjini Basu, Sir Gurudas Mahavidyalaya
  54. Debaditya Bhattacharya, Nibedita College
  55. Bhaskar Chaudhuri, Serampore College
  56. Nilanjan Chatterjee, Serampore College
  57. Saubhik Dasgupta, Serampore College
  58. Patrali Sinha, Serampore College
  59. Sharmita Dhar, Serampore College
  60. Suman Dutta, Serampore College
  61. Bidyut Banerjee, Serampore College
  62. Madhurilata Basu, Presidency University
  63. Rupsa Ray, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta and journalist
  64. Tista Das, West Bengal Education Service
  65. Saubhik Bandyopadhyay, West Bengal Education Service

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9. Statement from academicians in Gujarat

We, members of the academic community of Gujarat, are extremely disturbed by the recent events in Jawaharlal Nehru University and the developments thereafter. We feel worried about the emerging dangers against the right to dissent and freedom of speech.

We believe that the disturbances in JNU including slogans against India could have been easily avoided without the moral policing by political forces. The demonstrations could have been patently handled by the vice chancellor – if necessary by setting up an internal committee to investigate. We firmly believe that the freedom of academic institutions is an essential condition for knowledge promotion and sharpening discourses, as academic institutions of higher learning are the embodiment of thought, science, creativity, knowledge and critique, and there cannot be an upfront limitation on their power to think and express. This freedom should not have been violated by the government or any outside forces.

We are shocked to watch the behaviour of the lawyers, who took the law in their hands and attacked students, teachers, journalists and even Supreme Court Panel members. Equally shocking was the behaviour of the Delhi Police, who supported lawyers by watching it as mute spectators. The misuse of the sedition law and outright violence of lawyers worry us, as they signal a great danger to our human rights and democratic values.

We demand impartial inquiry into the events that have taken place in JNU and in the Patiala House Court and punishment to the guilty when necessary.

We want that the right to speech and the right to dissent are ensured to all citizens of our country.  Nationalism evolves gradually with the progress in democracy and growth of egalitarian society; and we believe that its interpretation should not be left to political parties. At the same time, free discussion on nationalism particularly in academic institutes must be encouraged.

Signed by:

Members of academic community of Gujarat (Date: February 22, 2016)

Sr.No. Designation Name Working at Location
1 Prof. AKASH ACHARYA Center for Social Studies Surat
2 Dr. MUNISH ALAGH Sardar Patel Institute of Economic and Social Research Ahmedabad
3 Prof. DINESHAWASTHI Sardar Patel Institute of Economic and Social Research Ahmedabad
4 Prof. RAKESH BASANT Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
5 Dr. GUARI BHARAT CEPT University Ahmedabad
6 Mr. ARUP LAL CHAKRABORTY Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar
7 Mr. ATANUCHATTERJEE Center For Development Alternatives Ahmedabad
8 Prof. KESHAB DAS Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
9 Ms. JIGNA DESAI CEPT University Ahmedabad
10 Prof. KIRAN DESAI Center for Social Studies Surat
11 Dr. RENU DESAI CEPT University Ahmedabad
12 Prof. ERROL D’SOUZA Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
13 Dr. SWETAGARG Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology Gandhinagar
14 Dr. AMRITA GHATAK Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
15 Prof. SRUBABATI GOSWAMI Physical Research Laboratory Ahmedabad
16 Prof. INDIRA HIRWAY Center For Development Alternatives Ahmedabad
17 Prof. SUDARSHAN IYANGAR Ahmedabad
18 Prof. SADAN JHA Cetre For Social Studies Surat
19 Dr. KISHOR JOSE Central University, Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
20 Prof. SATYAKAM’JOSHI Center for Social Studies Surat
21 Dr. RUTUL JOSHI CEPT University Ahmedabad
22 Prof. RITA KOTHARI Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar
23 Dr. PRIYA RANJAN KUMAR Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
24 Dr. SHAILENDRA KUMAR Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
25 Dr. RINAKUMARI Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
26 Dr. SONY KUNJAPPAN Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
27 Dr. DARSHINI MAHADEVIA CEPT University Ahmedabad
28 Prof. NITI MEHTA Ahmedabad
29 Dr. RUDRA MAVAYAN MISHRA Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
30 Dr. ATULMISHRA Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
32 Dr AMISHAL MODI Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology Gandhinagar
33 Dr. SIBA SANKAR MOHANTY Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
34 Mr. NAHAR MOHHAMED Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
35 Prof. SEBASTIAN MORRIS Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
36 Prof. TARA NAIR Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
37 Prof. R. PARTHASARATHY Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
38 Dr Arjun Patel Center for Social Studies Surat
39 Dr. JHARNA PATHAK Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
40 Dr. MINAL PATHAK CEPT University Ahmedabad
41 Dr. ITISHREE PATTNAIK Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
43 Prof. K. R. RAMANATHAN Physical Research Laboratory Ahmedabad
44 Prof. RAGHVANRANGARAJAN Physical Research Laboratory Ahmedabad
45 Dr. ANIL KUMAR ROY CEPT University Ahmedabad
46 Prof. C N RAY CEPT University Ahmedabad
47 Dr. DHANANJAY RAI Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
48 Dr. ADITI NATHSARKAR Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology Gandhinagar
49 Ms SHACHI SANGHAVI CEPT University Ahmedabad
50 Prof. AMITA SHAH Center For Development Alternatives Ahmedabad
51 Prof. GHANSHAYAM SHAH Center for Social and Development Study Ahmedabad
52 Ms. NEHA SHAH L J Institute of management Ahmedabad
53 Prof. SHRUTI SHARMA Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
54 Prof. SUKHPALSINGH Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
55 Ms. MELISSA SMITH CEPT University Ahmedabad
57 Prof. JEEMOL UNNI Institute of Rural Management, Anand Anand
58 Prof. PURNIMA VERMA Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
50 Dr. P K VISHWANATHAN Gujarat Institute of Development Research Ahmedabad
60 Dr. UMESH YADAV Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
61 Dr HEMANT KUMAR Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
62 Ms A ANUPAMA Central University Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
63 Dr KHAIKHOLEN HAOKIP Central University, Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
64 Dr BERYL ANAND Central University, Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
65 Dr TULIKA TRIPATHI Central University, Gandhinagar Gandhinagar

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10. Canadian academics stand with JNU and student struggles in India

We, the undersigned, faculty and students at universities across Canada, wish to express our solidarity with the ongoing student struggle at Jawaharlal Nehru University in Delhi, India. In doing so, we wholeheartedly condemn the extra-constitutional detention of the JNU Students’ Union leader Kanhaiya Kumar and seven other students on February 9, 2016. Universities should be places of academic freedom where dissent and critical thinking must not only be tolerated but should be actively encouraged. The students who have been charged with sedition (a colonial-era relic that the Supreme Court of India itself has attempted to weaken) for questioning the Indian state’s controversial execution of Afzal Guru, the man accused in the attack on the Indian Parliament in 2001, breached no law, and are being illegally detained. Credible news reports from India’s leading television channels and newspapers have confirmed that the police action, and subsequent occupation of the university by police, was spurred on by the right-wing students group, the ABVP, that seems to have a direct line of influence with the ruling BJP in central government.

Since the February 9 incident, other students and faculty of JNU have been intimidated and beaten up, and journalists have been threatened and assaulted. Further exacerbating the attacks, on 15 February 2016, JNU students and faculty, along with at least ten journalists, were violently attacked by lawyers and a legislator from the ruling party when they were peacefully attending court in support of Kanhaiya Kumar’s hearing. All of this amounts to one of the most concerted and vicious projects of undermining not just one of India’s leading universities, but of creating a widespread culture of intolerance and state-sanctioned violence and orchestrating an assault on public education. The attack on JNU comes on the heels of what is being termed the institutional murder of Rohith Vemula, a dalit student at the University of Hyderabad, and the concerted attacks on dalit students there, also in the name of a manufactured patriotism in which any questioning of the state’s role in entrenching caste and class hegemony is rendered “anti-national”.

We want to assure the students, staff and faculty of JNU that they are not alone in their struggle. At Canadian universities, we are part of a growing global movement that seeks to condemn and resist the vicious attack on democratic norms, academic freedom and political dissent at JNU and in other universities globally.

(If you wish to add your name to this statement of support, please post a comment with your name, affiliation and location. We will update the post as more signatures come in. Thank you.)

1 Jayeeta Sharma, Associate Professor, University of Toronto

2 Rachel Berger, Associate Professor, Concordia University, Montreal QC Canada

3 Ishita Pande (JNU, 1999), Queen’s University, KIngston

4 Natalie Rothman, University of Toronto

5 Deborah Cowen, Department of Geography and Planning, University of Toronto

6 Ajay Rao, Associate Professor, University of Toronto

7 Prashant Keshavmurthy, Professor, Institute of Islamic Studies, McGill University, Montreal

8 Dr. Kristine Alexander, the University of Lethbridge

9 Raju J Das, Associate Professor, York University, Toronto

10 Andrea Marion Pinkney, McGill University, Montreal, QC

11 Rupinder Minhas, York University, Toronto

12 Rianne Mahon, Political Science, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

13 Rabea Murtaza, Toronto

14 Nhung Tuyet Tran, University of Toronto

15 Sara Saljoughi, English & Cinema Studies, University of Toronto

16 Katharine N. Rankin, University of Toronto

17 Daniel White, Professor of English, University of Toronto

18 Margrit Eichler, Professor Emerita, OISE/UT

19 Lynne Viola, University Professor, University of Toronto

20 Bettina von Lieres, Centre for Critical Development Studies, UTSC

21 Prasad Khanolkar, University of Toronto, Canada

22 Chandler Davis, University of Toronto, Toronto

23 Francis Cody, University of Toronto, Toronto

24 Bhavani Raman, University of Toronto, Toronto

25 Neilesh Bose, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, CANADA

26 Natalie Zemon Davis, University of Toronto, Toronto

27 Jens Hanssen, Depts of History and NMC, Toronto

28 Alejandro Paz, Anthropology, University of Toronto

29 Anup Grewal, University of Toronto

30 Dia Da Costa, University of Alberta

31 Rosa Sarabia, University of Toronto

32 Tong Lam, University of Toronto, Canada

33 Malini Guha, Carleton University

34 Laura Toth

35 Nicholas Sammond, University of Toronto, CANADA

36 Sanjeev Routray, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

37 Michael Lambek, FRSC, Professor of Anthropology, University of Toronto

38 Richard Roman, Sociology, Emeritus, University of Toronto, TORONTO

39 Dharashree Das, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby

40 Samar Nour, PhD Candidate, University of Toronto, Canada

41 Kari Dehli, Professor Emerita, University of Toronto

42 Katherine Blouin, University of Toronto, Toronto

43 Meghana Rao, University of Toronto

44 Kanishka Goonewardena, Department of Geography and Planning, University of Toronto

45 Kajri Jain, University of Toronto

46 Sheila L. Cavangh, Associate Professor, York University, Toronto, Canada.

47 Ruth Marshall, Associate Professor, Political Science, University of Toronto

48 Renisa Mawani, Associate Professor, University of British Columbia

49 Sara Shneiderman, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

50 Meenal Shrivastava, Professor Political Economy and Global Studies, Athabasca University

51 Sherene Razack, Professor, University of Toronto

52 Andrea Muehlebach, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Toronto, Canada

53 Alexandre Da Costa, university of Alberta, Canada

54 Leslie Orr, Professor, Concordia University, Montreal

55 Ju Hui Judy Han, Assistant Professor in Department of Geography and Planning, University of Toronto

56 Parnisha Sarkar, PhD candidate, University of Toronto

57 Richard Sandbrook, Professor Emeritus of Political Science, University of Toronto

58 Kate Holland, Associate Professor, Dept of Slavic Langs and Lits, University of Toronto
59 Denise Reaume, Faculty of Law, University of Toronto, Canada

60 Michelle Murphy, History, University of Toronto

61 Charles Chiu

62 Elena Razlogova, Concordia University, Montreal

63 Roberta Buiani , University of Toronto

64 Firoza Elavia, York University, Toronto

65 Jack Quarter, University of Toronto

66 Amandeep Kaur Panag, York University, Toronto

67 Rajyashree N Reddy, Department of Geography and Planning, University of Toronto

68 Carla Nappi, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC

69 Vasuki Shanmuganathan, University of Toronto, Canada

70 Omar Sirri, PhD student, University of Toronto – Toronto, Canada

71 Sikata Banerjee, University of Victoria

72 Ozlem Aslan, University of Toronto, Toronto

73 David Seitz, Lecturer, University of Toronto

74 Nestor E. Rodriguez, Associate Professor, University of Toronto

75 D. Alissa Trotz, University of Toronto, Toronto

76 Reeju Ray, University of Western Ontario

77 Naisargi N. Dave, Associate Professor, Anthropology, University of Toronto

78 Anne-Emanuelle Birn, Professor, University of Toronto

79 Emily Gilbert, University of Toronto, Canada

80 Sam Walker, PhD Candidate, University of Toronto

81 Neera Singh, University of Toronto

82 Sevi Bayraktar, PhD student, University of California, Los Angeles

83 Professor Jody Berland, York University, Toronto, Canada

84 Bianca Dahl, University of Toronto

85 Shyam Ranganathan, Department of Philosophy, York University, Toronto

86 Christopher Webb, University of Toronto, Canada

87 Greg Albo, Political Science, York University, Toronto

88 Jaby Mathew, University of Toronto, Toronto

89 Justin GD, York University, Toronto

90 Shubhra Gururani, Associate Professor, Anthropolgy, York University, Toronto

91 Alan Sears, Sociology, Ryerson University, Toronto

92 Andre Sorensen, Professor, University of Toronto Scarborough

93 Arsalan Kahnemuyipour, Associate Professor of Linguistics, University of Toronto

94 Elizabeth Brule, York University, Toronto

95 Rahul Varma, playwright

96 Genevieve Mercier-Dalphond, McGill University, Montreal Canada

97 Zain R. Mian, McGill University, Montreal QC

98 Adrian Murray, University of Ottawa

99 Teresa Hubel, Huron University College, London, Ontario, Canada

100 Parastou Saberi, University of Toronto Scarborough, Toronto

101 Jennifer Chun, Sociology, University of Toronto Scarborough

102 Pasha M. Khan, McGill University, Montreal

103 Elliot Montpellier, McGill University

104 Tayyaba Jiwani, University of Toronto

105 Kevin Coleman, University of Toronto, Canada

106 Catherine Larouche, McGill University, Montreal, Canada

107 Nadir Khan, Law Student at McGill University, Montreal, Quebec

108 Meghant Sudan, Concordia University, Montreal

109 Yves Winter, McGill University, Montreal

110 Gavin Smith, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto

111 Qamar Zaidi, York University, Canada.

112 Dominik Wujastyk, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada

113 Sanchia deSouza, University of Toronto, Toronto

114 Prasanta Dhar, Dept of History, University of Toronto

115 Jennifer Glassco, PhD Candidate in Anthropology, McGill University, Montreal

116 Sergio Arcaro Centennial College Toronto Ontario Canada

117 Nishant Upadhyay, York University, Mississaugas of New Credit Territories (Toronto)

118 Joel Dickau, University of Toronto, Canada

119 Ponni Arasu, Graduate Student, Department of History, University of Toronto.

120 Piyusha Chatterjee, Concordia University, Montreal

121 Apurva Ashok, BA Student, McGill University.

122 Rebecca Coulter, PhD, Professor Emerita, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada

123 Maya Khankhoje, former student at Concordia University/McGill University, Montreal.

124 Kiran Mirchandani, University of Toronto, Canada

125 Dr. Dylan Clark, Lecturer, The Asian Institute, University of Toronto (Canada)

126 Joseph H. Carens, Professor of Political Science, University of Toronto

\127 Mohamad Tavakoli, University of Toronto

128 Michael Nijhawan, York University, Toronto

129 Holly Gilmour, Oshawa, Ontario

130 Jordy Cummings, York University, Toronto

131 Zaheer Baber, Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto

132 Ayyaz Mallick, PhD student, York University Canada

133 Mostafa Abedinifard, MacEwan University, Edmonton

134 Michael Truscello, Associate Professor, Mount Royal University

135 Jennifer Nedelsky, Faculty of Law and Political Science, University of Toronto, Canada

136 Rupaleem Bhuyan, Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto

137 Akshaya Tankha, Doctoral Candidate, University of Toronto

138 Colin J Campbell, OCAD University, Toronto, Canada

139 Justin Podur, Associate Professor, York University, Toronto

140 Kanta Murali, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto

141 Poulami Roychowdhury, McGill University, Montreal

142 Pierre-Alexandre Paquet, PhD Student and Lecturer, McGill University

143 Sailaja Krishnamurti, York University, Toronto

144 Nick Tosaj, University of Toronto

145 Nick McGee, University of Toronto, Toronto ON

146 Anil Varughese, Assistant Professor, Carleton University, Ottawa

147 Chandrima Chakraborty, Associate Professor, McMaster University, Hamilton

148 Katherine Lemons, McGill University, Montreal

149 Noa Shaindlinger, PhD Candidate, University of Toronto

150 Jessica Stilwell, McGill University, Montreal

151 Reena Shadaan, PhD Candidate, York University

152 Mary Louise Adams, Queen’s University, Canada

153 Sadeqa Siddiqui, Montreal Canada

154 Dhruv Jain, York University, Toronto, Canada

155 Ashutosh Kumar

156 Emma Alexander, University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg

157  Andrew Ivaska, Associate Professor of History, Concordia University, Montreal

158 Chiara Letizia, UQAM, Montreal, Canada

159 Holly Gilmour, Oshawa, Ontario

160 Elise Chenier, Professor, Simon Fraser University

161 Edward Dunsworth, University of Toronto, Canada

162 Chandan Narayan, York University

163 Kajri Jain, University of Toronto, Toronto

164 Sandeep Banerjee, McGill University

165 Charles Stankievec, University of Toronto, Canada

166 Naomi Nagy, University of Toronto

167 R.Cheran, University of Windsor, Canada

168 LM Ishiguro, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

169 Katie Davis, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON

170 Daniel Bender, Historical and Cultural Studies, University of Toronto-Scarborough

171 Radhika Mongia, York University, Toronto

172 Kristin Bright, Carleton University, Ottawa Canada

173 Kevin A. Gould, Concordia University, Department of Geography, Planning and Environment

174 Jamie Magnusson, U of Toronto, Canada

175 Mona Luxion, PhD Candidate, McGill University (Montreal); visiting scholar at CEPT University and IIM Bangalore

176 Ken MacDonald, Dept. of Geography, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON

177 Diane Shea, Dawson College, Montreal

178 David Morris, Concordia University, Montreal

179 Miriam Diamond, Professor, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Toronto

180 Michael Ekers, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto

181 Luin Goldring, York University, Toronto, Canada

182 Katherine Bischoping, Department of Sociology, York University, Toronto

183 Punam Khosla, York University

184 Nancy Jackson, Vancouver BC. Associate Professor Emerita, University of Toronto

185 Penni Stewart, York University, Toronto

186 Nancy Mandell, Professor, Sociology, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

187 Hyun Ok Park, Associate Professor of Sociology, York University, Toronto

188 Margaret E. Beare, York University, Toronto

189 Shubhra Gururani, Associate Professor, York University

190 Sophie Voegele, York University Toronto, Canada and Zurich University of the Arts ZHdK, Switzerland

191 Mark Thomas, Department of Sociology, York University, Toronto, Canada

192 Amber Gazso, York University, Canada

193 Elizabeth Lunstrum, Associate Professor, York University, Toronto, Canada

194 Kathryn Barber, York University

195 Azar Masoumi, York University, Canada

196 Melanie Balfour, PhD student, History department, University of Toronto

197 Gokboru S. Tanyildiz, PhD Student, Sociology, York University, Canada

198 Michael Ornstein, Sociology, York University

199 Diana Abraham, York University

200 David McNally, Professor of Political Science, York University, Toronto, Canada

201 Matt Jones, University of Toronto

202 Benjamin Christensen, PhD Candidate, York University

203 Pauline O’Connor, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada

204 Walter Whiteley, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

205 Nalini Persram, York University, Canada

206 Pallavi V Das, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay

207 Honor Ford-Smith, Associate Professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University, Toronto, Canada

208 Tina Virmani, Humber College, Toronto

209 Erin Runions, a Canadian in the U.S. (Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Pomona College, California)

210 Danijel Matijevic, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario

211 Peter Vandergeest, York University, Toronto

212 Perry Maddox, McGill University

213 Daniel Yon, Associate Professor, Dept. of Anthropology and Faculty of Education, York University, Toronto.

214 Miguel Gonzalez, York University

215 Zoe Newman, Toronto, Canada

216 Karen Anderson, Associate Professor, York University Canada

217 Malcolm Blincow, Anthropology, York University (Retired)

218 Mark Goodman, Department of Sociology, York University

219 Eric Clark, professor, Lund University, Sweden

220 Gizem Cakmak, York University (Toronto, Canada)

221 Dr. Alex Latta, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, ON

222 Max Haiven, Assistant Professor, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design

223 Girish Daswani, University of Toronto, Canada

224 Sima Aprahamian, Ph.D. Simone de Beauvoir Institute

225 Alexandra L., University of Toronto

226 Lorna Erwin, Associate Professor, York University

227 Prof.Emeritus, Meyer Brownstone, University of Toronto, Toronto Ontario Canada

228 Colleen Bell, Assistant Professor, University of Saskatchewan

229 Gulay Kilicaslan, York University, Toronto, Phd Student at Sociology

230 Bonita Lawrence, Department of Equity Studies, York University

231 Duygu Gul Kaya, York University, Toronto

232 Soma Chatterjee, School of Social Work, York University, Toronto

233 Rana Sukarieh, Phd candidate, Sociology department, York University

234 Paul Kingston, Associate Professor Political Science, university of Toronto

235 Matthew Rowlinson, English and Centre for Theory and Criticism, Western University

236 Harry Smaller (Ph.D), Faculty of Education, York University, Toronto

237 Pablo Idahosa, York Univetsity

238 Lily Cho, York University, Toronto

239 Tariq Amin-Khan, Ryerson University, Toronto

240 Himani Bannerji

241 Anwesha Ghosh, University of Toronto, Toronto

242 David L. Robinson, University of Toronto

243 Natalie Kouri-Towe, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON

244 Carlota McAllister, York University, Toronto, Canada

245 Sara Carpenter, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada

246 Liette Gilbert, York University, Toronto

247 Amir Hassanpour, Associate Prof (Ret.), University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada

248 Lorna Weir, York University, Toronto, Canada

249 Stephen Slemon, Professor of English & Film Studies, University of Alberta

250 Stephen Rockel, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

251 Anna Zalik, York University, Canada

252 Joan Simalchik, University of Toronto Mississauga

253 Emily Zimmermann, York University MA student, North York, On

254 Monica Espaillat Lizardo, University of Toronto

255 Hyun Ok Park, Associate Professor of Sociology, York University, Toronto

256 Barbara Evans, Department of Cinema and Media Studies, York University, Toronto

257 Karen Murray, York University

258 Marcia Macaulay, York University, Toronto, Canada

259 Eric Mykhalovskiy, Associate Professor, York University

260 Ranu Basu York University

261 Dr. Barbara Heron, Professor, School of Social Work, York University, Toronto, ON, Canada

262 Prof. Sam Lanfranco, York University, Canada

263 Deborah Brock, York University, Toronto

264 Prof. Ian Radforth, Department of History, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada

265 Teresa Abbruzzese, York University, Toronto, Canada

266 Louis Lefeber, Professor of Economics, York university, Toronto, Canada

267 Leigh Denholm, York University, Canada.

268 Prof. Aryn Martin, York University, Toronto ON Canada

269 M Shohet, UTSC, Toronto, Canada

270 Viviana Patroni, York University, Canada

271 Hira Singh, York University

272 Shahrzad Mojab, University of Toronto

273 Professor Gail Vanstone, York University, Toronto, Canada

274 Srilata Raman, Religion, University of Toronto

275 Anne O’Connell, Associate Professor, York University

276 Caroline Hossein, York University

277 Robert Latham, Political Science, York University, Toronto, Canada

278 Roshney Kurian, McMaster University, Hamilton ON, Canada

279 Craig Jennex, Department of English & Cultural Studies, McMaster University, Canada

280 Ravi Adve, University of Toronto

281 Sarah Harrison, McMaster University, Hamilton ON Canada

282 Olivia Polk, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

283 Shalini Sharma, Dept. of Economics, University of Toronto at Mississauga

284 Eva C Karpinski, Associate Professor, York University, Toronto

285 Tyler Pollard, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

286 Nour Afara, McMaster University, Hamilton

287 Alison Crosby

288 Glenn Stalker, Associate Professor, York University, Toronto

289 BD Ferguson, McMaster University, Ontario

290 Danielle Landry, PhD student, York University

291 Susie O’Brien, McMaster University, Hamilton ON canada

292 Franca Iacovetta, Professor, University of Toronto

293 Eliot Tretter, Proffesor, University of Calgary

294 Markus Reisenleitner, YorkU

295 Kasim Husain, PhD Candidate and Sessional Lecturer, McMaster University

296 Mary O’Connor, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

297 Sarah D’Adamo, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

298 Elizabeth Zanoni, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Toronto Scarborourgh

299 Adan Jerreat-Poole, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, CANADA

300 Dr. Anne Savage, McMaster University

301 Dr. Lorraine York, McMaster University, Hamilton ON

302 James King, F.R.S.C.

303 Marcelo Vieta, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto

304 Jeff Fedoruk, McMaster University, Hamilton Ontario

305 Benjamin Prus, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

306 Constantine Gidaris, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

307 Michelle Buckley, University of Toronto

308 Donald Goellnicht, McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada

309 Caitlin Janzen, Ph.D Student, York University

310 Lesley Wood, York University, Toronto Canada

311 Christine Dalton, Hamilton

312 Andrew Clement, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto

313 Marcelle Kosman, University of Alberta, Edmonton Alberta

314 Marcello Musto, York University

315 Dr. Sourayan Mookerjea, Department of Sociology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada

316 Amber Dean, McMaster University

317 Donna Gabaccia, University of Toronto

318 Jeffrey Pilcher, University of Toronto

319. Michelle Cho, McGill University, Montreal

  1. Malavika Kasturi, University of Toronto, Toronto

321. Janet Rubinoff, York University, Toronto

322 Molly Ladd-Taylor, York University

323 Neil ten Kortenaar, University of Toronto Scarborough

324 Natasha Pinterics, University of Alberta, Edmonton

325 Craig Fortier, Assistant Professor Social Development Studies, Renison University College (University of Waterloo)

326 Malissa Phung, McMaster University, Canada

327 Carmela Murdocca, York University

328 Shamika Shabnam, Doctoral Candidate at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

329 Kovid Sharma

330 Brycen Dwayne Janzen, McMaster University – Hamilton, ON

331 Janet Rubinoff, York University (Toronto)

332 Sonia Persaud,  McMaster University Hamilton

333 Hilton Bertalan, York University

334  Aditi Gupta, University of Alberta, Edmonton

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11. Open letters from CeMIS professors and students expressing solidarity with JNU students and staff

Dear Vice Chancellor,

We are writing to express our deep concern and shock at the events unfolding on your campus, and we urge the responsible authorities to act decisively to protect the reputation of JNU as a global centre of academic excellence where students engage in free and vigorous debate.

Since its inception, the Centre for Modern Indian Studies (CeMIS) at the University of Göttingen, Germany, has had the privilege of being closely associated with the academic community of JNU. A formal MOU between our institutions has enabled the intensive exchange of students and faculty between our institutions for over five years. Each year, we have several JNU students and professors in residence as guest scholars, and CeMIS students and faculty are welcomed as visiting scholars at JNU. We undertake collaborative research projects with several individual faculty members across your campus, and have formally partnered with JNU faculty on several large international research grant applications. JNU is thus a vital link in an international network of world class collaborative research in the social sciences and humanities. It is the only Indian institution with which we have maintained such close cooperation because we recognize its reliable excellence.

Now, however, the academic freedom that has formed the very basis of our cooperation with JNU, and that has enabled its scholars to be recognized across the globe for their pioneering intellectual work, is under serious threat. The campus is in a state of siege and police power is being abused to quell dissent. We admire the courage and integrity of JNU’s teachers and students who have withstood this unwarranted assault with peaceful protest. We ask that you, as the seniormost administrator, restore the institutional autonomy of JNU and provide immediate assurance to the international community that JNU will maintain its commitment to a vision of India that champions academic freedoms and civil liberties.


Prof. Dr. Ravi Ahuja
Prof. Dr. Patrick Eisenlohr
Prof. Dr. Srirupa Roy
Prof. Dr. Rupa Viswanath

Professors, Centre for Modern Indian Studies (CeMIS), University of Göttingen

CeMIS students express solidarity with JNU students and staff

We, students of the Centre for Modern Indian Studies in Göttingen, express our solidarity with Jawaharlal Nehru University students and staff in Delhi.

We align ourselves with CeMIS professors, who last week published an open letter to the JNU Vice Chancellor, urging him to restore the university’s institutional autonomy and protect academic freedoms and civil liberties.

We are deeply concerned by the recent events at JNU. The university should be a place of critical debate and thought, as well as a platform for political activism. Unfortunately, the incidents of the last two weeks have demonstrated that these essential aspects of university life are no longer secure.

Under the pretext of democracy and national security, the government is violently proceeding against students, professors and the staff of JNU. The imprisonment of Kanhaiya Kumar, physical and mental violence against those labelled ‘anti-national’ by the government and fractions of the media, as well as the ongoing police presence on the campus are clearly anti-democratic actions.

JNU is an important institutional partner for CeMIS, with academic exchange between the institutes since CeMIS was opened in 2009. Several JNU professors and students have worked and studied at CeMIS, and our students have welcomed the opportunity to do exchanges at JNU. For us students, studying at JNU meant fruitful discussions, being part of a vibrant student community, and having the chance to participate in political debate. A place of acceptance and security, JNU also provided a warm and welcoming atmosphere for all of us. We greatly enjoyed the academic, cultural and social exchange on the JNU campus. We not only had the chance to widen our academic horizons, but also to make close friends.

The repressive actions of the government against those who question and actively challenge social and structural inequalities in India have already claimed several victims, one of them being Rohith Vemula. Many JNU students fight against casteism, sexism, gender inequality and other forms of discrimination. And it is this activism which makes JNU a place we highly appreciate and greatly respect.

We therefore demand the restoration of academic freedom, the immediate release of Kanhaiya Kumar, an end to physical and mental violence against so-called ‘anti-nationals’, and the withdrawal of the police force from the campus.

We stand in solidarity with our friends, colleagues and the staff at JNU.

CeMIS students

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12. Statement of solidarity with student activists in India, from Pennsylvania

We, activists and academics in the Pennsylvania region, strongly condemn the attack on academic freedom at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi. The arrest of Kanhaiya Kumar, the President of the JNU Students Union, on charges of sedition has brought to light the intervention of the Union Government in the internal matters of the university. The repeated interference by police personnel at the behest of Vice Chancellors on university campuses is a draconian move. The charges against students were brought after an event organised by a section of students on campus premises to discuss the judicial execution of Afzal Guru. The JNU Students’ Union was subsequently held responsible for the “anti-national” slogans that were chanted by a group of students. We condemn these trumped-up and unconstitutional charges and stand in solidarity with the efforts to repeal capital punishment in India.

The events unfolding at JNU reveal disturbing similarities with instances of government repression on other campuses. We remember, with distress, the actions of the University of Hyderabad (UoH) administration in cahoots with the Central Government, actions that led to the death of a promising Ambedkarite student-activist, Rohith Vemula. The protests that arose indicted the discriminatory atmosphere prevailing in our universities as tantamount to the denial of the fundamental right to education to socially marginalised groups. Further, the murder of social thinkers like Govind Pansare and M.M. Kalburgi by hyper-nationalist elements under the tacit encouragement of the policies of the Central Government has shocked all advocates of free speech in India.

The charges of sedition against students participating in democratic discussion of public events is highly objectionable. The stifling of voices through intimidation and muscle power does not bode well for educational institutions.

Debate and dissent are integral parts of a strong democracy. Universities are critical public spaces that support these democratic practices to realize the values of social justice enshrined in the ideals of the constitution. International campuses like JNU, FTII and UoH bring together diverse group of students in the spirit of self-reflexive and deep intellectual engagement to ask fundamental questions of their social realities. An attack on these institutions is an attack on this precious pedagogical space. Student movements in India in alliance with other social movements in the country have historically been a resilient and sensitive force. The BJP government’s efforts to undermine them is nothing but an assault on Indian democracy. The government has failed to protect the rights of student bodies, and the highhandedness of the police highlights the insecurities of the present government.

In the United States during a presidential election year, we watch increasingly bigoted views against blacks, Muslims, and immigrants gaining ground. These events cannot be seen in isolation and we stand at the intersection of socio-political movements in the US and South Asia.

We stand in solidarity with students and faculty of JNU and demand the immediate release of the detained students. We appeal to all advocates for academic freedom in India and abroad to stand united against this state atrocity.

  1. Anannya Bohidar, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  2. Ammel Sharon, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  3. Meghna Chandra, Philadelphia South Asian Collective
  4. Ania Loomba, English, University of Pennsylvania
  5. Projit Mukharji, History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania
  6. Najnin Islam, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania
  7. Suvir Kaul, English, University of Pennsylvania
  8. Rallapalli Sundaram, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  9. Teren Sevea, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  10. Debjani Bhattacharyya, History, Drexel University
  11. Kasturi Sen, Lawyer for Defender Association of Philadelphia and Philadelphia South Asian Collective
  12. Toorjo Ghose, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania
  13. Ishani Dasgupta, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  14. Shampa Chatterjee, Medical School, University of Pennsylvania
  15. Lucas de Lima, Graduate Student, Comparative Literature, University of Pennsylvania
  16. Sangeeta Banerji, Graduate Student, Geography, Rutgers University
  17. Sarita Mizin, Graduate Student, English, Lehigh University
  18. Aashish Gupta, Graduate Student, Demography, University of Pennsylvania
  19. Shourjya Deb, Graduate Student, Public Policy and Administration, Rutgers University
  20. Sugra Bibi, University of Pennsylvania
  21. Samira Junaid, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  22. Nandita Chaturvedi, Graduate Student, Physics and Astronomy, University of Pennsylvania
  23. Muhammed Malik, with Philadelphia South Asia Collective
  24. Joshua Pien, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
  25. Sirus Joseph Libeiro, Graduate Student, School of Design, University of Pennsylvania
  26. Sambuddha Chaudhuri, Graduate Student, School of Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania
  27. Tanushree Bhan, Graduate Student, Public Policy and Public Affairs, University of Massachusetts Boston
  28. Pooja Nayak, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  29. Kaushik Ramu, Graduate Student, Comparative Literature, University of Pennsylvania.
  30. Darakhshan Khan, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  31. Timothy J. Loftus, Graduate Student, Religion, Temple University.
  32. Mercedes Yanora, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  33. Faisal I Chaudhry, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  34. Sudev J Sheth, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  35. Brooke Stanley, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  36. Melissa E. Sanchez, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  37. Hao Jun Tam, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  38. David Kazanjian, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  39. Aaron Bartels-Swindells, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  40. Manjita Mukharji, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  41. Diksha Dhar, Graduate Student, Fulbright-Nehru Visiting Scholar, University of Pennsylvania.
  42. Faranak Miraftab, Urban and Regional Planning, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
  43. Timothy Lorndale, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  44. Brittany Puller, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  45. Philip Friedrich, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  46. Dave Kussell, Undergraduate, Economic History, University of Pennsylvania.
  47. Jared Weinstein, Undergraduate, Math, University of Pennsylvania.
  48. Pushkar Sohoni, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  49. Akshay Walia, Graduate Student, Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania.
  50. Lavanya Nott, Philadelphia South Asia Collective.
  51. Leopold Eisenlohr, Graduate Student, Chinese, University of Pennsylvania.
  52. Evelyn Soto, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  53. Johanna Greeson, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania.
  54. Julia Chatterjee, Undergraduate, South Asia Studies, University in Pennsylvania.
  55. Josephine Park, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  56. Priti Narayan, Graduate Student, Geography, Rutgers University.
  57. Monidipa Mondal, Graduate Student, Rutgers University.
  58. Baishakh Chakrabarti, Graduate Student, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  59. Chao Guo, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania.
  60. Ram Cnaan, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania.
  61. Femida Handy, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania.
  62. Ezekiel Dixon-Roman, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania.
  63. Andrea Doyle, Social Policy and Practice, University of Pennsylvania.
  64. Sheena Sood, Philadelphia South Asia Collective.
  65. Rovel Sequeira, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  66. Daniel Davies, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  67. David L. Eng, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  68. Nancy J. Hirschmann, Political Science, University of Pennsylvania.
  69. Kalyan Nadiminti, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  70. James English, Director, Penn Humanities Forum, University of Pennsylvania.
  71. Micah Del Rosario, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  72. Chi-Ming Yang, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  73. Jean-Christophe Cloutier, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  74. Andrew Lamas, Urban Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  75. Amy Kaplan, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  76. Jed Esty, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  77. Prachi Priyam, Philadelphia South Asia Collective.
  78. Michael Gamer, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  79. Timothy Corrigan, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  80. Paul Saint-Amour, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  81. Monika Bhagat-Kennedy, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  82. Fatima Tassadiq, Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania.
  83. Rahul Mukherjee, Cinema Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  84. Eram Alam, History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania.
  85. Jazmin Delgado, Graduate Student, English, University of Pennsylvania.
  86. Luther Obrock, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  87. Raili Roy, South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
  88. Hariprasad Kowtha, Philadelphia South Asian Collective.

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13. Bangalore research network’s letter of solidarity with JNU

We, the undersigned members of the Bangalore Research Network and a consortium of academics and researchers from Bangalore, declare our solidarity with the students and faculty of the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi protesting the illegal police arrest of JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar on charges of sedition. We unequivocally stand by them in affirming that universities are autonomous spaces for the free expression of a plurality of beliefs and cannot become military spaces of thought control that go against the very grain of a democratic society.  With them, we condemn the blatantly authoritarian attempt by the police and the central government to witch hunt students on the basis of their political beliefs. We also condemn the unethical media trial of JNU students such as Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid.

In a speech that is now widely available on the internet, Kanhaiya Kumar spoke critically of the BJP government policies at a peaceful student meeting held at JNU which was well within his rights by the laws of the land. This occurred a day after a group of unidentified students shouted slogans at an event that he had no part in organising. Legal luminaries have opined that those slogans about the rights of Kashmiris to independence from Indian military oppression over the last few decades, whether one might agree with them or not, do not amount to sedition.  Kanhaiya Kumar was, however, arrested by the police for ‘anti-national’ behaviour and for violating sedition laws against incitement of violence.  With no proof to substantiate the charge of sedition, his arrest can only be read as a reflection of the authoritarian nature of the current Indian government and its intolerance to any dissent. JNU is but the latest example of attempts to stifle dissenting student voices in university campuses across India, including others at FTII, BHU and University of Hyderabad. This is reflective of the current climate where higher education is being viewed as purely instrumental, captured by the logics of the neoliberal state and capital.

As researchers, scholars, and academics, we are extremely concerned with the manner in which the ruling government has so blatantly set aside India’s longstanding commitment to plurality in belief. The space and freedom to express diverse and divergent beliefs and opinions are the foundations for critical thought and expression that university spaces cultivate. We urge the Vice Chancellor of JNU, who gave the police permission to wrongfully detain and arrest JNU students, to recognise the momentum of support building up for them and to immediately step in to safeguard their rights.

Dated: February 22, 2016.

Signatures in alphabetical order:

  1. Abeer Kapoor, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  2. Abhishek Hazra, Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore
  3. Aditi Arur, Consultant, J-PAL South Asia, Bangalore
  4. Amman Madan, Azim Premji University, Bengaluru
  5. Andrea Wright, Department of Anthropology, Brown University, Rhode Island
  6. Anjali Shivanand, Centre for Child and the Law, National Law School of India University, Bangalore
  7. Aparna Sundar, Visiting Faculty, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  8. Andaleeb Rahman, Postdoctoral Fellow, Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Bangalore
  9. Anwesa Bhattacharya, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
  10. Archit Guha, Centre for Public History, Bangalore
  11. Asha Verma, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  12. Ashwin, Independent Researcher, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  13. Atreyee Majumder, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  14. Avishek Ray, NIT Silchar
  15. Bitasta Das, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
  16. Debjani Banerjee, Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore
  17. Devaki, L., Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  18. Dhruva Desai, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  19. Elizabeth Thomas, Centre for the Study of Culture and Society, Bangalore
  20. Gayatri Menon, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  21. Garima Jain, Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Bangalore
  22. Girija K P, Centre for the Study of Culture and Society, Bangalore
  23. Gowri Vijayakumar, Department of Sociology, University of California, Berkeley
  24. Hemangini Gupta, Department of Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies, Colby College, Maine
  25. Issac Arul Selva, Human Rights Activist, Bangalore
  26. Jasmeen Patheja , Blank Noise.
  27. Jyothsna Belliappa, Bengaluru
  28. Kanthi Krishnamurthy, Centre for the Study of Culture and Society, Bangalore
  29. Kavya Murthy, Bangalore
  30. Kinnari Pandya, Azim Premji University, Benguluru
  31. K Ravichandran, Student, Azim Premji University , Bangalore
  32. Lakshmi Arya, Independent scholar and writer, Bangalore
  33. Lata Mani, Independent Researcher, Bengaluru
  34. Lindsay Vogt, Department of Anthropology, University of California, Santa Barbara
  35. Madhu Bhushan, Independent (re)searcher-activist, Bangalore
  36. Manisha Anantharaman, Justice Community and Leadership, Saint Mary’s College of California
  37. Maia Barkaia,(JNU, 2010), Tbilisi State University (Tbilisi) and University of Oxford, Oxford.
  38. Manu V. Mathai, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  39. Muthatha Ramanathan, Bangalore
  40. Navdeep Mathur, IIM Ahmedabad
  41. Narendra Raghunath, Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore
  42. Neenu Suresh, National Law School of India University, Bangalore
  43. Nikunja S. Bhuyan, Student, Azim Premji University, Bangalore.
  44. Nimisha Agarwal, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
  45. Nitya V, Bengaluru
  46. Padma Baliga, St. Joseph’s College, Bengaluru
  47. Padmini Ray Murray, Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore
  48. Pallavi Gaur, Student, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  49. Pooja Sagar, Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore
  50. P. P. Sneha, Bangalore
  51. Prakriti Prajapati, Researcher, ATREE, Bengaluru
  52. Pranesh Prakash, Bangalore
  53. Preeti Kharb, Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore
  54. Rajeev Kumaramkandath, Christ University, Bengaluru
  55. Rameshwara Nand Jha, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  56. Rashmi Sawhney, Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore
  57. Renny Thomas (JNU 2015), Department of Sociology, Jesus and Mary College, University of Delhi
  58. Riddhi Pandey, Student, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  59. Robert M Geraci, Manhattan College (former Visiting Scholar at IISc), New York
  60. Rolla Das, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
  61. Sanam Roohi, NIAS, Bangalore and AISSR, University of Amsterdam
  62. Sarah Jacobson, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  63. Savitha Suresh Babu, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
  64. Sahil Sasidharan, Associate – Academics & Research, IIHS, Bangalore/Bengaluru
  65. Sazana Jayadeva, The German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg
  66. Scott Sorrell, Department of Anthropology, Cornell University, New York
  67. Sharad Sure, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  68. Sharmadip Basu, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  69. Shoibal Chakravarty, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
  70. Shreyas Sreenath, Department of Anthropology, Emory University, Atlanta
  71. Shreyas Srivatsa, Urban Planner & Architect, Bangalore
  72. Shrishtee Bajpai, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  73. Shruti Ajit, Researcher, Kalpavriksh, Pune
  74. Simy Joy, Independent Researcher, Ely, England
  75. Smriti Srinivas, NAGARA, Bangalore
  76. Soundarya Iyer, Student, NIAS, Bangalore
  77. Sreechand Tavva, Post Graduate Student, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  78. Sreeparna Chattopadhyay, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  79. Subadra Panchanadeswaran, Adelphi University, New York
  80. Subir Rana, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
  81. Sufaid V, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  82. Sunandan, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  83. Sunayana Ganguly, Independent researcher and entrepreneur, Bangalore
  84. Suraj Jacob, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  85. Tarang Singh, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  86. Tathagata Biswas. Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  87. Vasanthi Mariadass, Srishti Institute for Art Design and Technology, Bangalore
  88. V R Vachana, Alumna, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  89. Vidhya Raveendranathan, Centre For Modern Indian Studies, Georg- August- University, Gottingen, Germany
  90. Vikas Maniar, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  91. Vinay K Sreenivasa, Alternative Law Forum, Bangalore
  92. Vineeta, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  93. Vineeth Krishna E, Centre for Law and Policy Research, Bangalore
  94. Vivek Mishra, Alumnus, Azim Premji University, Bangalore
  95. Vrashali Khandelwal, Student, Azim Premji University, Bangalore

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14. In solidarity with the dissenting student community in India: A statement from Australia

As academics, students, writers, artists and activists from Australia, we condemn the use of oppressive power by the Indian state, its police, and Hindu fundamentalist groups to shut down voices of dissent emerging from within public universities in India.

We join the international community in extending our support to the students, faculty and staff at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Hyderabad Central University (HCU) and many other public universities, who have been courageously protesting the overreach of state power and brutal stifling of dissent, carried out in the guise of majoritarian Hindu nationalism (Hindutva).

Students at JNU and HCU have been targeted for opposing the death penalty awarded to Afzal Guru and Yakub Memon, convicted for “terrorism” by the Supreme Court of India. Students’ opposition to the death penalty – an act of violence carried out by the state to assert its sovereign might – has been manipulated by the state, university administrators, and irresponsible media reports, to be understood as their support for “terrorists”, and thus considered treasonous. The labelling of student activists as “anti-national” by invoking the draconian law on sedition (a legacy of British colonial rule), is a blatant attack on academic freedom. These attacks have been orchestrated by the BJP regime to strike fear among citizens who question its practices of anti-minority religious hate mongering and xenophobic propaganda. HCU student Rohith Vemula was suspended and driven to suicide because of the way the university administration and the state intimidated and threatened him. These attacks on students and free speech are not aberrations or sudden spurts of violence. Rather, they are part of a pattern of attacks on every idea and expression that does not pander to fascist Hindutva ideology.

We deplore the attack on journalists, students, academics and activists by the lawyers at the Patiala House Court premises. The silence and inaction of the police in controlling this situation only testify to the state’s complicity in these events. We are appalled by the jingoistic and prejudiced reporting by some media channels to vilify JNU student activists Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid.

We endorse the demands made by the protesting students, staff and faculty at JNU and HCU. We demand: a) the immediate release of the Kanhaiya Kumar, President of the JNU Student Union, and Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya; b) that the Bar Council of India enquiry into the attacks on journalists and protestors in Patiala House Court be carried out without political manipulation; c) that there should be no further intimidation and arrests of student activists for carrying out peaceful protests; d) the government must preserve the autonomy of universities and de-militarise campuses.

We acknowledge that our solidarity is being extended from territory occupied by a settler colonial state. We also acknowledge that the Indigenous peoples who have not ceded their sovereignty, own this land. This acknowledgement is a necessary precondition for building transnational solidarity against governments – like those in India and Australia – that use democracy and national security as alibis for legitimising their everyday violence.

Endorsed by:

  1. Debolina Dutta, PhD Researcher and Lawyer, Melbourne Law School, University of Melbourne
  2. Oishik Sircar, Teaching Fellow and Doctoral Researcher, Institute for International Law and the Humanities, Melbourne Law School
  3. Samia Khatun, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Department of History, University of Melbourne
  4. Shakira Hussein, Hon. Research Fellow, The University of Melbourne
  5. Mridula Nath Chakraborty, Academic, Monash University
  1. Irfan Ahmad, Associate Professor of Political Anthropology, ACU, Melbourne, Australia
  1. Rajgopal Saikumar, PhD Candidate, The Australian National University
  1. James Goodman, Associate Professor, University of Technology Sydney
  1. Kama Maclean, Associate Professor, UNSW
  1. Monique Hameed, Tutor, University of Melbourne
  1. Jordy Silverstein, Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Melbourne
  1. Heather Goodall, Professor Emerita in History, University of Technology Sydney
  2. Sukhmani Khorana, Lecturer, University of Wollongong
  1. Dr Zeena Elton, Independent Researcher/Writer
  1. Trish May, PhD student, UNSW
  1. Maryam Alavi Nia, PhD Candidate, UNSW
  1. Assa Doron, Academic , Australian National University
  1. Meera Ashar, Lecturer (Assistant Professor), The Australian National University
  2. Samanthi Gunawardana, Lecturer, Monash University
  1. Josh Cullinan, Secretary, Australia Bangladesh Solidarity Network
  1. Dr Lionel Bopage, Retired Public Servant, n/a
  1. Neeti Aryal Khanal, PhD candidate, Monash University
  1. Erin Watson-Lynn, Lecturer, Monash University
  1. Roanna Gonsalves, Writer and academic, UNSW
  1. Michelle de Kretser, Writer, University of Sydney
  1. Dr Ruth De Souza, Stream Leader, Research, Policy and Evaluation, , Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health
  1. Hannah Courtney, PhD Candidate, UNSW
  1. Dr Danny Butt, Lecturer, Centre for Cultural Partnerships, Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne
  1. John Zubrzycki, PhD Candidate, University of New South Wales
  1. Ben Spies-Butcher, Senior Lecturer, Macquarie University, Australia
  1. Camilla Palmer, Postgraduate Researcher, University of New South Wales
  1. Brenda Dobia, Senior Lecturer, Western Sydney University
  1. Coel Kirkby, Postdoctoral Fellow, Melbourne Law School
  1. Elizabeth King, Student, UNSW
  1. Rajpaul Sandhu, Teaching, ACS
  2. David Feith, Subject Coordinator, Humanities, Monash College
  3. Wimal Jayakody, Member of PHRE
  4. Steve Pereira , Community Engagement, Melbourne University
  1. Anura, Real Estate Sales, PHRE
  1. Sithy Marikar, Vice President – AGGSl, Australian Labor Party
  1. S. R. Sivasubramaniam, Engineer
  1. Padraic Gibson, Senior Researcher, Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning, University of Technology Sydney
  1. Vandana Ram, Artist
  1. Victoria Baldwin, Administrator
  1. Robin Jeffrey, Retired Academic
  1. Nadia Rhook, Lecturer, Latrobe University
  1. Mohamed Masood, President, Werribee Islamic Centre
  1. Anthony P. D’Costa, Chair and Professor of Contemporary Indian Studies, University of Melbourne
  1. Yamini Narayanan, ARC DECRA Senior Research Fellow, Deakin University
  1. Monimalika Sengupta, PhD Candidate, Monash University
  1. Parichay Patra, Doctoral Candidate, Monash University, Australia
  1. Lucy Honan, Teacher, Australian Education Union Councillor
  1. Arka Chattopadhyay, PhD student, University of Western Sydney
  1. Rev.Dato’ Dr.Sumana Siri, Buddhist Cardinal of Europe, Buddhist Realists’  Movement, U.K.,Italy & France
  1. Kalpana Ram, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Macquarie University
  1. Dr Sagar Sanyal, Adjunct lecturer, University of Melbourne
  1. Piergiorgio Moro, Secretary, Australia Asia Worker Links
  1. Beth Sometimes, Researcher, VCA, Melbourne University
  1. Russell Smith, Lecturer, Australian National University
  1. Anuparna Mukherjee, Ph.D. Researcher, ANU
  1. Amy Thomas, PhD Candidate, University of Technology, Sydney
  1. Shak Sandhu, Restaurant Manager
  1. Stephen Church, Doctoral Student/Casual Lecturer & Tutor, University of New South Wales
  1. Angela Smith, Researcher, North Africa Mixed Migration Task Force
  2. Balraj Sangha, Justice Of The Peace, Australian Labor Party
  1. Emma Torzillo, Medical Doctor, University of Sydney and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney
  1. Anne Brewster, Associate Professor, UNSW
  1. Lalitha Chelliah, Nurse, 3 CR Broadcaster; Socialist Alliance member
  1. Max Kaiser, PhD Candidate, University of Melbourne
  1. Dr Amanda Gilbertson, McKenzie Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Melbourne
  1. Faisal Al-Asaad, Graduate Research, University of Melbourne
  1. Jerome Small, Industrial Organiser, Socialist Alternative
  1. Milo Adler-Gillies, Student, Paris 8
  1. Priya Chacko, Lecturer, University of Adelaide
  1. Vivien Seyler, Administrative Officer, South Asian Studies Association of Australia
  1. Bina Fernandez, Senior Lecturer, University of Melbourne
  1. Ghassan Hage, Professor, University of Melbourne
  1. Maria Elander, Lecturer in Criminology, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Melbourne
  1. Edward Mussawir, Lecturer, Griffith University
  1. Julia Lomas, PhD Candidate, Art History And Theory, Monash University
  1. Chris Andrews, Associate Professor, Western Sydney University
  1. Ben Silverstein, Lecturer, UNSW
  1. Alexandra Watkins, Academic, Deakin University
  1. Isabella Ofner, Researcher and Lecturer, The University of Melbourne
  1. Bina D’Costa, Academic, Department of International Relations, The Australian National University
  1. Shweta Kishore, Teaching Associate, Monash University
  1. Léuli Eshraghi, PhD Candidate, Monash University
  1. Dr. Ridwanul Hoque, Visiting Scholar at La Trobe Law School, La Trobe University
  1. Kristen Smith, Medical Anthropologist, University of Melbourne
  1. Joan Nestle, Independent Writer
  1. Adrian McNeil, Senior Lecturer, Monash University
  1. Parakrama Niriella, Theatre and Film Director, National Federation of Theatre Artists Sri Lanka
  1. Cait Storr, Sessional lecturer and PhD candidate, Melbourne Law School
  1. Greg Bailey, Hon. Research Fellow in Asian Studies (Sanskrit), La Trobe University
  1. Ian Woolford, Lecturer, La Trobe University
  1. Michael Stevenson, Retired
  1. Dolly Kikon, Department of Anthropology and Development Studies, University of Melbourne
  1. Jasmine Ali, Researcher, RMIT University
  1. Dr Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt, Senior Fellow, Resource, Environment & Development Program, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University
  1. Alison Young, Professor, University of Melbourne
  1. Usha Natarajan, Law Professor, American University in Cairo
  1. Ekta Sharma, Poet & Activist
  1. Rose Parfitt, Research Fellow, Melbourne Law School
  1. Suzette Mayr, PhD Student, University of New South Wales
  1. Leigh Hopkinson, Writer
  1. Amy Parish, PhD Candidate, UNSW
  1. Samantha Balaton-Chrimes, Lecturer in International Studies, Deakin University
  1. Audrey Yue, Associate Professor, The University of Melbourne

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15. Statement of solidarity with Jawaharlal Nehru University, India – City University of New York

By the Professional Staff Congress, the CUNY faculty and staff union:

PSC-CUNY stands in solidarity with the students, faculty and staff of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in Delhi, India, in their struggle against state repression of political speech.  

We condemn the arrest of JNU student union President, Kanhaiya Kumar, on charges of sedition and the expulsion of eight students by the university administration. The students are being persecuted by the Indian government and the university administration for participating in a rally protesting state policies and actions. It is a gross abuse of power for a democratic state to punish its citizens for exercising their right to political dissent.   

JNU is not a stand-alone incident; the recent attacks on students at other universities, like Jadavpur, and University of Hyderabad where it led to the tragic suicide of Dalit activist, Rohith Vemula, are part of a pattern of harassment and repression. We believe that the targeting of politically active youth at public universities reveals the broader program of the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) to push its neoliberal attack on the poor, its discriminatory agenda against minorities, its promotion of a hawkish foreign policy, and its squelching of political dissent.

We, at the City University of New York, and our fellow academics at universities throughout the USA appreciate the dangers of stifling academic freedom through our own destructive history. Our union is committed to fighting against class oppression, racism, and sexism, and to vigorously defend the right to political opposition.

We join faculty and students from across the world – including University of Texas, Doctoral Students Council, CUNY, Purdue University, Williams College in the US, Canadian universities, University of Leuven, Belgium, University of Oxford, UK, Bangalore Research Network, Tata Institute of Social Sciences and University of Hyderabad in India –  to express our solidarity with the students and faculty at JNU. We call upon Prime Minister Narendra Modi to immediately cease the pattern of persecution at universities. We also call on the Vice Chancellor of JNU to drop all punitive measures against the students engaged in protests, and to demand the immediate release of Kanhaiya Kumar.

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