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Sharjeel Imam believes India should be an Islamic state; has no remorse over his arrest: Delhi Police sources

JNU student Sharjeel Imam was arrested from Bihar after police teams from Bihar and Delhi had conducted multiple raids in different parts of the country to nab him. Imam has expressed no remorse over his arrest.

India TV News Desk Edited by: India TV News Desk New Delhi Updated on: January 30, 2020 12:23 IST
Sharjeel Imam
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Sharjeel Imam believes India should be an Islamic state: Delhi Police sources

According to news agency ANI, sources within the Delhi Police have said JNU student Sharjeel Imam was highly radicalised and believes that India should be an Islamic state. He has also admitted that no tampering has been done with the videos of his different speeches, they said. There was, however, no official confirmation on Imam's statement to sources within the Delhi Police. JNU student Sharjeel Imam, who was arrested by the Crime Branch of the Delhi Police, was sent to 5-day police custody on Wednesday.

Imam was arrested on Tuesday from his hometown in Bihar's Jahanabad and has been in the news for his inflammatory" speeches following which cases including sedition were registered against him. 

With such revelations, the Delhi Police is also examining Sharjeel Imam's connections with the Islamic Youth Federation & Popular Front of India, ANI reported. 

Imam has expressed no remorse over his arrest and all his videos are being sent to the Forensic Science Lab, they said, adding his social media accounts are being examined. 

Police teams from Bihar and Delhi had conducted multiple raids in different parts of the country to nab Imam.

He was brought to Delhi on Wednesday.

In the video, the activist is heard saying, "If five lakh people are organised, we can cut off the northeast and India permanently. If not, at least for a month or half a month. Throw as much 'mawad' (variously described as pus or rubbish) on rail tracks and roads that it takes the Air Force one month to clear it.

Who is Sharjeel Imam?

31-year-old Sharjeel Imam is a PhD student at New Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru University. Sharjeel Imam graduated in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. Imam had shifted to Delhi for pursuing research at the Centre for Historical Studies at the JNU. Imam's father, the late Akbar Imam, was a JD(U) leader who had unsuccessfully contested an assembly election in Bihar.

What are the charges against Sharjeel Imam?

Sharjeel Imam kicked up a controversy after a video emerged where he spoke about cutting off the northeast from India if "five lakh people stand organised". The Crime Branch of the Delhi Police registered a sedition case against him overhis North East remarks. He is currently in Delhi Police custody.

What India's sedition law says?

Section 124-A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) explains 'Sedition' in wide and magnanimous terms. 

It reads: "Whoever, by words, either spoken or written, or by signs, or by visible representation, or otherwise, brings or attempts to bring into hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite disaffection towards the Government established by law in India' shall be punished with life imprisonment.

However, the law further adds that comments that express strong disapproval of 'the measures of the Government, with a view to obtaining their desired modifications by lawful means, without exciting or attempting to excite hatred, contempt or disaffection, do not constitute an offense under this section.'

Falli S Nariman's views on sedition

Falli S Nariman, one of India's most respected legal luminary, in his article in the Indian Express once wrote: "To be anti-Indian is not a criminal offence, and it is definitely not sedition’.

Nariman further wrote: "Sedition” in India is not unconstitutional, it remains an offence only if the words, spoken or written, are accompanied by disorder and violence and/ or incitement to disorder and violence.

Also Read | Sharjeel Imam sent to 5-day police custody

Also Read | With heavy security, Sharjeel Imam produced before Saket court​

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