House Raided, Kin Questioned: UP, Delhi And Bihar Police Hunt For Sharjeel Imam Over Seditious Cut Off Assam Speech

House Raided, Kin Questioned: UP, Delhi And Bihar Police Hunt For Sharjeel Imam Over Seditious Cut Off Assam SpeechSharjeel Imam

Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student evaded his arrest after a joint team of Uttar Pradesh (UP), Delhi, and Bihar police on Saturday (25 January) night raided his ancestral house at Kako in Jehanabad district Bihar, reported The Times of India.

Jehanabad SP Maneesh, while speaking to TOI, confirmed the raids in search of Imam at Kako Bazar and said he had not been arrested yet.

An arrest warrant had been issued against Imam by Aligarh police in a sedition case, after a video of him went viral on social media in which he was heard inciting a crowd at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) to “cut off Assam from the rest of India.

Several cases in Assam and Delhi, including those of sedition, have also been filed against him in cognisance of his provocative speech at AMU on 16 January. In the video that has been shared on Twitter in big numbers, he can be heard saying “if we can organise 5 lakh people, it would be possible to permanently cut off Assam with rest of India...if not permanently, then at least for a few months... only then will the government hear our voice”.

He called upon all the Muslims to block the railway and road connectivity at the Chicken’s Neck. A narrow land stretch of about 22km in West Bengal, Chicken’s Neck or the Siliguri corridor connects the rest of the India with its northeastern states. He stressed on this stretch as the region largely inhabits Muslim population.

Provoking poeple to agitate and block the inter-state movement, he went on to say, “The model of the Shaheen Bagh protest is that of road blockade, rest is secondary. Understand the difference between chakka jam and dharna. Protest in every city, tell the people about chakka jam, prepare and then sit on national highways.”

The TOI report also identifies Imam as one the the organisers of the anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) protest at Delhi's Shaheen Bagh.

Jehanabad SP also said that some of his family members had been quizzed. He added that officials of intelligence agencies also questioned Imam’s close relatives, while detaining some of them.

The joint police team left for Patna as some of his relatives stayed, as per the TOI report attributing authoritative sources. “Imam's immediate family members live in Patna. We can't share more information related to the ongoing investigation as it's a sensitive issue. Senior officials are monitoring the police operation,” an officer posted at the police headquarters said.

Imam’s Facebook profile claims he has done his schooling from St. Xavier's High School in Patna as well as from DPS-Vasant Kunj in New Delhi, before going to IIT-Bombay to pursue his post-graduation in computer sciences. After having worked as an IT programmer at the University of Copenhagen, he is currently studying at the Centre for Historical Studies of JNU.