Imam more dangerous than Kanhaiya: Shah hits out at CAA protests

Shah said Sharjeel has been arrested by Delhi police and is being brought to Delhi to be put behind bars.

Amit Shah, Bengal minority outreach
Union Home Minister and senior BJP leader Amit Shah, during his about 25-minute closed-door interactions with Bengal BJP leaders last Friday, expressed concern over the Left revival in the state, according to party insiders | File Photo: PTI

Home Minister Amit Shah has used anti-CAA activist Sharjeel Imam’s statement to strictly denounce the anti-CAA protests which have spread across the country and refuse to die down.

Slamming Imam, who was arrested in Bihar on sedition charges, Shah on Tuesday said his speech was “more dangerous” than that of former JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar.

Shah said Sharjeel has been arrested by Delhi police and is being brought to Delhi to be put behind bars.

“See his (Sharjeel’s) statement. Have you seen the video of (the speech of) Sharjeel? It is more dangerous than Kanhaiya Kumar’s statement,” he said at a function in Raipur.

Also read | Shah dares Kejriwal to visit Shaheen Bagh, says Delhi residents will decide rest

“He (Sharjeel) is talking about cutting off the Chicken’s Neck to disintegrate Assam from India. Even seven generations would not be able to do that,” Shah said.

The Chicken’s Neck is a narrow stretch of land of about 22 km in West Bengal that connects the north-eastern states to the rest of India, with Nepal and Bangladesh lying on either side of the corridor.

Sharjeel Imam, who was on the run after sedition charges were slapped against him for allegedly making inflammatory statements, was arrested from Bihar’s Jehanabad district on Tuesday.

His arrest comes Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday asked why the BJP government had not yet arrested him.

“Sharjeel spoke of separating Assam from the country. It is very serious. You are the home minister of the country,” Kejriwal had tweeted in response to Shah’s statement that Kejriwal and the AAP supported the anti-CAA protests in Shaheen Bagh of Delhi. Shah had sought to know whether Kejriwal endorsed Imam’s views.

A graduate in computer science from IIT-Mumbai, Imam had shifted to Delhi for pursuing research at the Centre for Historical Studies at the JNU.

He was slapped with a sedition case after a video of his purported speech went viral on social media where he was heard speaking about “cutting off” Assam and the northeast from the rest of India.

(With agency inputs)