The Chief Judicial Magistrate court in Guwahati sent an anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) activist Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) research scholar Sharjeel Imam to 14-day judicial custody on February 28th, 2020.
Imam, the alleged mastermind of Shaheen Bagh protest, was brought to Assam from New Delhi by train on February 20th, 2020. He was sent to four-day police custody on February 20th, 2020 that was extended to another four days on February 24th, 2020.
When Imam was being taken to the Guwahati Central Jail, a group of protesters belonging to Hindu Jagran Manch, gathered in front of the court and shouted slogans like ‘Sharjeel murdabad‘ and ‘Desh ke Gaddaron ko, Goli maaro sa***n ko,’ (shoot the traitors of the country). The police hurriedly took him away from the crowd.
He was arrested from Bihar’s Jehanabad on January 28th, 2020 for his alleged seditious “cut off Assam from rest of India” speech in New Delhi.
The JNU student has been booked by police of six states – Bihar, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi – for sedition for his provocative speeches had stoked controversy with his “cut off Assam from India” remark. A video of him allegedly raising cut-off-Assam’ slogans went viral days on social media prior to his arrest.
The Guwahati City Police Crime Branch slapped him with charges of sedition and inciting enmity between communities under sections 13(1)/18 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and 153 (A), 153 (B), 124 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). Arunachal Pradesh police may also seek his remand.
In a widely shared shocking video, Imam is seen making controversial statements saying that Muslims are in such numbers that they can cut out the entire Northeast from the rest of India “if not permanently than maybe for few months”.
In the video, Imam says, “If we have 5 lakh organised people then we can permanently cut North-east from India or at least for one-two month. Put so much (unclear) on the roads and tracks that they cannot even remove it for a month. It is our responsibility to isolate Assam from India, then only they will listen to our voice.”
Imam is a graduate in computer science from IIT-Mumbai and had shifted to Delhi for pursuing research at the Centre for Historical Studies at the JNU.