2019 Jamia rioting case: JNU student Sharjeel Imam denied bail

  • The additional sessions judge Anuj Agarwal while denying Imam the bail said that the cursory and plain reading of the speech displays that it was on communal lines.
Sharjeel Imam(Amal KS/ Hindustan Times)
Sharjeel Imam(Amal KS/ Hindustan Times)
Updated on Oct 22, 2021 03:35 PM IST
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Written by Shankhyaneel Sarkar | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Jawaharlal Lal University (JNU) student Sharjeel Imam was denied bail by a Delhi court on Friday in connection with allegedly delivering an inflammatory speech which incited violence in 2019. The court observed that the speech was on communal lines and the content of the speech tended ‘to have a debilitating effect on the peace and harmony.’

According to Delhi Police, Iman allegedly delivered a speech during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC) which was provocative in nature on December 13, 2019 which led to riots two days later when a mob of over 3,000 people attacked cops and torched vehicles in Delhi’s Jamia Nagar.

The additional sessions judge Anuj Agarwal while denying Imam the bail said that the cursory and plain reading of the speech displays that it was on communal lines. “The tone and tenor of the incendiary speech tend to have a debilitating effect upon public tranquility, peace, and harmony of the society,” he said.

The judge also quoted Swami Vivekananda while delivering the verdict. “We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think; Words are secondary; Thoughts live; they travel far,” he said, according to a report by news agency ANI.

The judge also did note that the evidence in support of the allegations that the rioters got instigated by Imam's speech and following which they indulged in the acts of rioting, mischief, and attacking the cops was sketchy. It said that whether the speech would fall in the ambit of section 124A (Sedition) Indian Penal Code or not still requires deeper analysis at an appropriate stage.

Alongside this case, Imam is accused of being the "mastermind" of the February 2020 northeast Delhi riots, which led to deaths of 53 people and injured over 700.

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Thursday, January 27, 2022