Released from jail on six-month interim bail along with Umar Khalid, Anirban Bhattacharya of Jawaharlal University also addressed students after being freed from Tihar Jail. Bhattacharya followed Khalid’s speech, and reinforced the issue of religious identity, asking "What if Khalid was a mosque-going, devout Muslim, what if both of us were madrasa-educated muslims from Azamgarh, how many people would have stood up for us then?”
In the video above, Bhattacharya says that the narrative of Khalid's visiting Pakistan thrice is one that sells, while his going to Pakistan does not.
Bhattacharya was nothing if not explosive. “When nuns were being raped in Kandhamal the VHP members were chanting slogans of ‘Bharat Mata ki jai’; for some people this is nationalism. Rohith Vemula is killed in the name of nationalism. In Tamil Nadu, a couple married outside of their caste are killed in broad daylight to save Indian culture. If this is nationalism, then we are all anti-national,” he said.
Bhattacharya and Khalid had both surrendered to the Delhi police on the night of February 23. The two, along with Kanhaiya Kumar, have been charged with sedition for raising slogans against the nation on February 9.
The most low key of the three JNU students arrested, Bhattacharya questioned the claims made by sections of the media to the effect that their “blood boils looking at what’s happening in JNU.”
“When Muslims, Dalits, adivasis are killed your blood doesn't boil? When Kunan Poshpora rapes happen, when women in Manipur claim rapes by the army, when people like Pansare and Dabholkar are killed, when you look at the poverty in the country, when women are told to stay at home by the RSS, does your blood not boil then? I want to ask those self-professed nationalists, 'what is the boiling point for your blood?'”