Sunday, January 29, 2023

SC Refuses To Stay Prosecution Of Sharjeel Imam In Different States In Connection With Hate Speech And Sedition Case

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The Supreme Court today refused to stay prosecution of JNU student Sharjeel imam in different states in connection with hate speech and sedition case.

The bench comprising Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice V Ramasubramanium was hearing Sharjeel Imam’s plea seeking consolidation of FIRs registered against him in various states across the country.

Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave appearing for Imam urged the Court to grant a stay on the prosecution since the SC would be on vacation in the coming weeks.

However, the bench said that the prayer was only for clubbing of FIR’s and it cannot grant an interim relief at this stage.

The bench further directed the states of Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh to file their counter affidavits within a period of two weeks.

The matter has been listed for next hearing after 3 weeks.

On May 26, the Supreme Court had issued notice to States of Assam, UP, Manipur & Arunachal Pradesh.

Five FIR’s have been registered against him in different States for involvement in violence at Jamia on December 13 and 15, 2019 for instigating and abetting riots, due to his seditious speech on December 13 and for a speech he made at Aligarh Muslim University against Citizenship Amendment Act on January 15. Imam, who was previously one of the organizers of Citizenship Amendment Act protest at Shaheen Bagh is facing sedition charges under Sections 124 and 153-A including Section 13, UAPA.

On April 25, a Delhi Court extended investigation period under UAPA from 90 days to 180 days meaning that detention of Imam gets extended till investigation period. Delhi’s crime branch while seeking extension had sought more time on ground that anti-coronavirus lockdown had seriously disrupted pace of investigation.

Read the order here;


-India Legal Bureau

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