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Sharjeel Imam's Speech Clearly On Communal Lines, Incited People To Revolt Against Govt: Police To Delhi High Court In 2019 Jamia Rioting Case

Nupur Thapliyal
3 March 2022 8:50 AM GMT
Sharjeel Imams Speech Clearly On Communal Lines, Incited People To Revolt Against Govt: Police To Delhi High Court In 2019 Jamia Rioting Case
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Opposing the bail plea moved by Sharjeel Imam in the 2019 Jamia rioting case, the Delhi Police has told the Delhi High Court that Imam's speech was clearly on communal lines and that he had misled the students by mentioning about the fake detention camp. This is with reference to the speech delivered by Imam on December 13, 2019 at Jamia Milia Islamia University. The case alleges that...

Opposing the bail plea moved by Sharjeel Imam in the 2019 Jamia rioting case, the Delhi Police has told the Delhi High Court that Imam's speech was clearly on communal lines and that he had misled the students by mentioning about the fake detention camp.

This is with reference to the speech delivered by Imam on December 13, 2019 at Jamia Milia Islamia University. The case alleges that Sharjeel Imam delivered provocative speeches which led to Delhi Riots at various places.

In the status report filed by the Delhi Police, it has been stated thus:

"On analysis of his above speech given in Delhi, it is revealed that the speaker by way of misinformation is inciting the gathering to revolt against the Government of the day by exhorting the general public to block the ingress and egress to 500 cities in India, which have substantial Muslim population. The statement is also promoting enmity between different groups of society on religious grounds."

"The speech if acted upon can have real and devastating effects on people's life and risks their health and safety. It is harmful and divisive for communities and hampers social harmony."

Apart from the aforesaid speech, the status report also mentions that another provocative speech was given by Imam in January 2020 in Aligarh Muslim University regarding his opposition to CAA & NRC.

"Accused Sharjeel Imam by way of his above speech was seen instigating a particular religious section of community against the government of the day by creating unfounded fears in their minds regarding CAA and the process of NRC, which is yet to be implemented in any manner through the country barring Assam. Further, he by way of his speeches was also spreading falsehood about genocide in Assam. He through his speeches was instigating a particular religious section of the society to disrupt/block the access to North-East region of India from Central India at "Chicken Neck"," the status report reads.

The matter, which was listed for hearing before Justice Rajnish Bhatnagar on Wednesday, was later adjourned to March 10.

Sharjeel Imam was denied regular bail in the matter in October this year after the Trial Court observed that the tone and tenor of the incendiary speech tend to have a debilitating effect upon public tranquility, peace and harmony of the society.

Though the Trial Court had observed that the evidence against Imam was "scanty and sketchy" to take a prima facie view that his speeches incited riots, it denied him bail noting that further examination was needed to ascertain if the speech amounted to the offense of sedition under Section 124A IPC and promotion of communal disharmony under Section 153A IPC.

The Court had noted that the prosecution case for instigation of riots was left with "gaping holes" which cannot be filled with "surmises and conjectures".

Nevertheless, it had denied him bail stating that "the issue whether the said speech would fall within the ambit of section 124A IPC or not, requires a deeper analysis at an appropriate stage."

About the Case

The facts of the case are that on December 15, 2019, information was received by Police regarding a demonstration against the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) by the students and residents of Jamia Nagar.

It was alleged that a mob had blocked traffic movement on the road and started damaging public/private vehicles and properties with sticks, stones, and bricks.

Specific allegations against Imam were that he instigated a particular religious community against the government by creating fear in their minds regarding CAB and NRC.

As per the prosecution, the said speeches delivered by Imam were seditious, communal, and divisive in nature and were aimed at promoting enmity between different religions.

Case Title: Sharjeel Imam vs. State

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