The Delhi Crime Branch arrested JNU PhD student Sharjeel Imam for the second time on Monday. According to the police, he is suspected to be involved in the December 15 Jamia violence that broke out during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act.
An accused in the case disclosed that he was allegedly provoked by Sharjeel Imam’s speeches. Subsequently, a Delhi court sent Imam to one-day police custody in this case. Currently, he is in judicial custody after sedition charges were slapped against him for the 'Cut Assam from India' speech.
The Jamia violence refers to the clash between the people and the police in New Friends Colony near Jamia Millia Islamia University which left nearly 60 people injured. Subsequently, there were reports of students being injured and detained as the police entered the Jamia campus. Moreover, least 5 buses were torched and more than 100 public and private vehicles were damaged. Later, the Delhi police released photos of 70 people involved in the violence.
On February 15, the Jamia Coordination Committee released a video of police officers hitting students in the first-floor reading hall of the varsity. While BJP cast aspersion over the video, other political parties issued a strong condemnation of the same. Earlier in the day, two more videos emerged where police personnel are seen thrashing students as they tried to run away from the library. One of the police personnel seemingly tried to destroy the CCTV installed in the library, in a clip the camera nonetheless captured.
Imam was a key organizer of the Shaheen Bagh protests. His controversial remarks came to light on January 25 when BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra shared a video that featured him. In the video purportedly from Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh, he is heard saying that 5 lakh people can come together and permanently cut the North-East from India. Moreover, he stressed that this was the only way in which the Indian government would pay heed to the concerns of the protesters. He was arrested from Bihar's Jehanabad district on January 28. As per sources, the Uttar Pradesh police is set to invoke the National Security Act against Imam very soon.
In the video, Imam said, "If we have 5 lakh organized people then we can permanently cut north-east from India or at least for one month. Put so much (unclear) on the road that they cannot even remove it for a month. It is our responsibility to isolate Assam from India, then only they will listen to us."