Delhi HC grants bail to Sharjeel Imam in sedition and UAPA case; to remain in jail in another case

Sharjeel Imam. [File Photo]

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court granted statutory bail to activist Sharjeel Imam on Monday in a sedition and Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) case related to his alleged inflammatory speeches at Delhi’s Jamia area and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Bar and Bench reported.

Justices Suresh Kumar Kait and Manoj Jain made the decision after considering that Imam has already served half of his sentence.

However, Imam will remain in jail as he is also accused in a larger conspiracy case linked to the 2020 Delhi violence, the report said.

Imam had appealed against a trial court’s denial of bail in the sedition case. He argued that he had already served four years out of a maximum seven-year sentence and was thus eligible for statutory bail. He also pointed out that the Supreme Court has put the sedition charge on hold, and the UAPA charges against him carry a maximum of seven years in prison.

The trial court had previously denied bail, stating that Imam’s speeches, while not directly inciting violence, mobilised the public and contributed to the Delhi violence.

Additional Sessions Judge Sameer Bajpai noted that Imam’s speeches inspired disruptive activities, leading to increased protests, roadblocks, and subsequent riots causing damage and loss of life.

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