Delhi court rejects bail plea of Sharjeel Imam in sedition, UAPA case

New Delhi: On Saturday, a Delhi court denied statutory bail to Sharjeel Imam in a sedition and Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) case related to allegedly making inflammatory speeches in Delhi’s Jamia area and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU).

Additional Sessions Judge Sameer Bajpai of Karkardooma court delivered the order.

The charges stem from Imam’s speeches at AMU and Jamia while protesting the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizenship (NRC).

Imam had been arrested on January 28, 2020, in connection with this case. Earlier in July 2022, the trial court had rejected his initial bail application.

Imam argued that he had already spent four years in jail, nearing the maximum seven-year sentence, making him eligible for statutory bail. He contended that the Supreme Court had put the sedition charge in abeyance, and the UAPA provisions invoked against him did not carry a sentence exceeding seven years.

Contrarily, the Delhi Police asserted that the punishments for the invoked offenses should be considered cumulatively, not concurrently. The court, after considering arguments from both sides, pronounced the order.

The decision by the trial court followed an order from the Delhi High Court, urging an expeditious resolution of Imam’s bail plea.

The plea challenging the order framing sedition and UAPA charges against Imam is scheduled for a hearing at the Delhi High Court on March 8.

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