"Woh Savarkar ke chele hain (They are Veer Sawarkar's disciples)," JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar's words are met with loud cheers. The applause reaches a deafening crescendo with his next sentence, "He (Savarkar) who went beg for pardon from the British."
Before he was arrested on charges of sedition, Kanhaiya Kumar delivered a fiery speech in Jawaharlal Nehru University campus. The speech was unabashedly critical of the Narendra Modi government and the BJP and the right wing political ideology. But we hear him repeatedly swearing faith in the constitution.
"We don't need a certificate of patriotism from RSS. We don't want a certificate of being a nationalist from the RSS. We are from this country. We love its soil. The 80 poor in our population, we fight for them. For us, that is patriotism," he says.
"Humein poora bharosa hai, Babasaheb ke upar. Humein poora bharosa hai iss desh ke sangvidhan ke upar (We have complete faith in Babasaheb Ambedkar. We have complete faith in the country's constitution)," he says.
He goes on to add, "If anyone raises a finger at our constitution, be it the Sanghis, be it anyone else, we won't tolerate it. But the constitution taught in Nagpur, we have no faith in it." Nagpur is the RSS' headquarters.
"Subramanian Swamy says jihadis live in JNU. They say that JNU students want to spread violence. On behalf of JNU, I want to challenge the RSS to debate the issue of violence with us. We have several questions to raise."
The twenty-minute speech can be watched in the video above.
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