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‘Your duty to arrest him’: Arvind Kejriwal replies to Amit Shah over Sharjeel Imam

Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party national convener took on Union home minister Amit Shah on Monday after the later wanted to know whether the AAP leader supported Jawaharlal Nehru University student Sharjeel Imam who is now wanted by the police for allegedly making an “inflammatory and instigating” speech outside Jamia Millia Islamia on December 13 during anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests.

“You must have watched the video of Sharjeel Imam, he said “cut the chicken neck and cut-off North-East from India” he talked about dividing the country. Modi government told Delhi police and they have registered a sedition case against him. Kejriwal ji are you in favor of action against Sharjeel Imam or not? Are you in favor of those at Shaheen Bagh or not? Make it clear to the people of Delhi,” Shah had said at an election rally in Rithala.

In reply, Kejriwal took to Twitter to ask what was stopping Shah from arresting Sharjeel and accused the home minister of practising bad politics.

“Sharjeel spoke of separating Assam from the country. It is very serious. You are the home minister of the country. This statement of yours is bad politics. It’s your duty to arrest him immediately. It has been two days since he said this. Why are you not arresting him? What is your helplessness? Or do you have to do more dirty politics now?” Kejriwal tweeted.

The Delhi Police which reports to the Union home ministry, registered a case of sedition on Saturday against Sharjeel for his alleged inflammatory speech.

Cases have also been registered against him in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh after he allegedly called for Northeastern states to be “cut-off” from the rest of the country. If convicted under the IPC’s Section 124A, Sharjee could be imprisoned for life.

On Saturday, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the AAP engaged sparred over a video clip which shows Sharjeel who is known one of the organisers of Shaheen Bagh protests, calling to cut off Assam from the rest of India. While BJP targeted the AAP on its stand over the protest, the AAP hit back questioning why the government has not taken action in the matter.

The protesters of Shaheen Bagh have disassociated themselves from Sharjeel comments and stressed that the speech was not given there.

BJP’s national spokesperson Sambit Patra termed the speech made by Sharjeel Imam as “disturbing” and “seditious” and the video was “evidence” of “some kind of conspiracy brewing in Shaheen Bagh to finish off India’s independence.”

Delhi’s deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia had hit back at the BJP sayifg if Sharjeel was not arrested within 24 hours, “it can be thought that he is giving such statements as part of your plan”.

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