The nationalism propounded by the ruling BJP is centralised despotism, Trinamool Congress member Sugata Bose said on Wednesday in thed Lok Sabha while participating in a discussion on the Jawaharlal Nehru University controversy.
"I am a nationalist. But I do not vouch for the kind of nationalism propounded by the treasury benches. This nationalism is centralised despotism, " Bose said.
Bose said although he is not a communist, he would support JNU students union leader Kanhaiya Kumar, a leftist, and other students for the sake of freedom of expression.
"The idea of India is not so brittle as to go away with a few slogans, " Bose said, referring to the alleged anti - national slogans raised at the JNU campus on February 9.
Terming the government's crackdown on some JNU students a "witch hunt", the Trinamool MP said if universities and students are attacked in this way, "the legacy of the anti - colonial freedom struggle is undermined".
"What must be avoided is criminality of dissent, " he said.
Bose also accused the ruling dispensation of diverting the nation's attention from the core issues of governance.