Left parties to hold nationwide protests on JNU incidents

NEW DELHI(PTI): Accusing the RSS and the BJP of making “false allegations”, the Left parties on Friday said they will hold nationwide protests next week against the “anti-national” tag being given to them by Hindutva forces.

Leaders of Left parties during a meeting at the CPI (M) headquarters in New Delhi on Friday.

After a meeting of six Left parties in New Delhi on Friday, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury told reporters that the protests will be held between February 23 and 25.

He said a delegation comprising leaders of the Left parties and MPs from JD(U), the RJD and the NCP will call on President Pranab Mukherjee seeking his intervention in the row even as he stressed that JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar must be released forthwith.

“On the basis of false allegations, the RSS-BJP have mounted an all-India attack against Indian people, targeting the Left. This anti-national label they want to give to all others except themselves is something completely unacceptable.

“So, Left parties have decided to hold an all-India protest campaign against what the RSS-BJP is doing under this government’s patronage,” Mr. Yechury said.

Targeting right-wing forces on the issue, he said those who “glorify” Mahatma Gandhi’s killer Nathuram Godse as a national hero, are in “no position” to term Left leaders as “anti-national”.

Referring to the decision that all central varsities will fly tricolour atop a 207-feet tall mast on their campuses to signify a “strong India”, Mr. Yechury took a dig at the Centre saying such “whipping of jingoism” will not earn it “credible” points on nationalism.

“The size of the tricolour in our hearts and the comrades of the Left is much larger than any size this government may hoist in any university,” Mr. Yechury, flanked by other Left leaders, said.

Citing the alleged attack on CPI(M) head office and “threats” to him and CPI national secretary D. Raja over their stand on the varsity row, he said that Left leaders will meet the attack “politically and democratically”.

Besides Mr. Yechury and Mr. Raja, the meeting was attended by CPI(M) leaders Prakash Karat and S. Ramchandran Pillai, CPI general secretary S. Sudhakar Reddy, CPI(ML)-Liberation’s Swapan Mukherjee, RSP leader Abani Roy, AIFB general secretary Debabrata Biswas and Pran Sharma of SUCI(C).