Adv Tanveer Ahmed Mir rebuts Prosecution's arguments against #SharjeelImam who has sought bail in a case connected to #DelhiRiots before Delhi Court. "Sole indictment on the speech. Incumbent duty upon all of us to look at the speech... If it incident violence"
Mir argues in a case of #Sedition against Imam. On #NRC, Mir argues ultimately his client's speech talks about advocating of a policy like... "In a university if we don't debate public policies, where do we debate?" #sharjeel_imam #CAA_NRC #DelhiRiots
Mir: This is a criminal court. We don't go by inferences. I am not denying my speech. For the speech to fall under #Sedition... My friend can't have discretion to add his own thoughts and inferences. #sharjeel_imam #DelhiRiots
SPP Amit Prasad appears from a physical hearing. "I will rebut tomorrow. The IO is taking notes," says Prasad.
Mir: Another argument was that Imam tried to incite hopelessness in his speech. It is a dangerous argument to make.... When we look at the speech in totality, he calls for social unity in his speech. All these times of policies drawn by parties for petty political gain...
Mir: He says society has to unite and respond...Criticism of govt policies is obviously protest. Criticism comes in the form of songs, movies, protests. He said block roads, etc., but there will be no people. This is what he advocates.
Mir now refers to law on #Sedition. Reads relevant portions of judgment in #Kedarnath.
Mir: Kedarnath says if you make a speech, poem, film or may organise a protest. If what you say in the protest is critical of govt policy... to improve it and your call has 'umbilical cord' with incitement of violence, then the statute will kick in. #sedition #sharjeel_imam
Mir: We will have to look at the speech... Whether in the speech explicitly he calls for violence or violent means to change public policy... We can't let down society.. It has taken painstaking 60 years for jurisprudence. Constitutional means means right to protest..
Mir: Tomorrow there will be a call for Rail Roko.. The other day there was a call for #BharatBandh , are we going to invoke #Sedition in every case.... Does he need to be a meek citizen to be whacked around?
Mir: Solemn pride we take as members of Bar and Bench... that we will not fail out constitutional duty in having people criticising govt policy, prosecuted.
Mir: A message needs to go out that we are not going to buckle down to hedgehog govt policies.... Why did recently even the CJI said, do we still need sedition? Somewhere it is pinpricking the Courts, your honour.
Mir: This country is a democracy and stands on the pedestal of constitutional values. We need to protect those values. Imam cannot be allowed to be prosecuted just because he is critical of #CAA_NRC .
Mir: If that was contemptuous then SC wouldn't have entertained 140 odd petitions against #CAA_NRC...
Mir: Challenges will come. How will deal with the challenges will leave behind a legacy... Freedom fighters, Senior lawyers, who fought against challenges..
Mir: In the speech, there are 20 separate instances where #SharjeelImam says not to resort to violence. How does prosecution overlook those instances where he said resort to the protest peacefully. #sharjeel_imam
Mir: TV channels have to sell ads. I am not here to do that.
Mir reads judgment on sedition. 'When we are faced with a charge of sedition, what we are looking for is a incitement of violence. If there is no incitement, then second part of sedition comes into play."
Mir reads relevant portion. #sedition #sharjeel_imam #CAA_NRC
Mir: A govt survives of criticism. That is the food for the govt. If govt is not criticised, then it becomes a monarchy. Duty to criticise the govt. A university student, wanting to study modern study of India.
Mir: Just because he writes a thesis of partition and is Sharjeel Imam, he is amenable to prosecution under Sedition? Are leading a totalitarian state based on brute majoritarianism?
Mir: Today Sharjeel Imam is not at test. We are at test. The Bar and Bench is at test.
Mir: As an officer of this court, our response has to be very strong and in terms of rejecting the prosecution's contentions... We will have a spiralling effect. Today he questions. tomorrow farmers say we want good prices for crop, he will be booked for sedition.
Mir: Then for asking for women's rights, people will face sedition. The law is nothing but a colonial relic by those who subjugated us... to gag the press. That nobody should talk about the British. It is an imperious legacy and nothing else.
Mir: quotes a lawyer A G Noorani on #Sedition. Our forefathers laid their lives down. Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Nehru, Azad - all booked for Sedition. Father of the nation in 1923. Framers of Constitution of India did not want sedition...
Mir: I will never deny the speech. If people are booked in a manner like this, then I do not know what is in store for us. We cannot allow the people to
Mir: I seek bail and discharge of Sharjeel Imam. I crave leave of this court to see that speech. Those instances where he said don't resort to violence. I beseech the court, to uphold the flag of critical elements in the society.
Adv Tanveer Ahmed Mir: Sharjeel Imam is not a terrorist. He doesn't belong to any terrorism gang. He is there on a social agenda. He is not on a political agenda. He is seeking social, economic equality for everybody. #Sedition
Mir: Preamble says justice for all. Political representation of people of India cannot be stomped out by an elephant foot.
Mir: That is what his speech is all about. He never said raise your arms collect guns.... Why is he jail? We will eventually ask ourselves did we live up to our constitutional duties as lawyers and judges. And we will be accountable to self and no one else.
Mir: Today, this prosecution is of a whip of a monarch than govt established by law. At the end of the day dispensations will change and nothing is permanent.
Adv Tanveer Ahmed Mir recites a Urdu couplet before Court: "Aapse pehle jo yahan takhte-nahin tha, usse bhi khud khuda hone ka yakeen tha" #Urdu #Couplet #DelhiRiots #sharjeel_imam #sedition
Mir: Let us not loose sight of the direction we are going in. Everyone looks up to courts. I thank the court and my colleagues.
Court: I have a set of questions for you and the prosecution.
Judge Amitabh Rawat: By the way the poetry was good #Urdu #Couplet
SPP Prasad begins arguments.
Prasad: From what I have understood from the submissions (of Imam), a person has right to protest and that person can go to any extent. A govt is not listening then you can to any extent even if it paralyses the common man. I would refer to Amit Sahni's judgment by Supreme Court.
Prasad now reads Sahni's judgment.
The judgment is in connection with #ShaheenBagh. Prasad: Any allegation made that when I argued on 'as-salam-o-alikum' it was a rhetoric.
Prasad refers to the chargesheet filed in the case.
Prasad: My point was that the speech was addressed to a particular community.
Prasad reads portions from Imam's speech.
Prasad: When I am referring to this point (in Imam's speech) my friend says it is a rhetoric.
Prasad: When I say you are addressing to a particular community, it is rhetoric when you say it, it is not. Your address is clearly to a particular community.
Prasad: There are four speeches. All the use of the word that we don't have to use violence comes in the later speeches. My friend says Kedarnath. I have gone through it and compared the speech.
Prasad: Immediately after speech on 13th December, various violent incidents have taken place. Rioting took place in Jamia. Then incidents are of Dec 16, 17 in AMU. The fact that he is trying to give it a secular colour.
Prasad: Imam asking for #ShashiTharoor's book "Why I am a Hindu" to be kept at protests site was to give it a secular colour.
Court: First question is the different places in the speeches.
Prasad: In that regard there is a WP preferred by the accused and this is the prayer - refers to the prayer on consolidating all FIRs and seeking issuing a writ for transfer of probe from other states to Delhi police
Prasad: This issue is already pending before the Supreme Court.
Mir: Petition before SC, for these speeches, made in AMU, Jamia, man is getting prosecuted out of Arunachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Manipur and also out of Delhi.
Mir: All 5 indictments, material is common.
Mir refers to portions from Imam's speech where is supposedly asking people not to resort to violence and only calls for disruption.
Mir: Right from day 1 he has been mindful...He said we won't burn properties. What does it say for intent? Soul of people will remain the same.
Mir: Sadak pe aane ka huzoor kisi ko shauk nahi hai. Humara mulk gareebon ka mulk hai. Saara din log roti kamane me nikaal dete hain.
Court: What detention centre is he talking about in his speech.
Mir: Detention centres in Assam. At the end of the day NRC is a problem in Assam.
Mir: This detentions centres is what he is talking about. Why there is a challenge to #NRC read with #CAA. Tomorrow you can be called to a police station to prove your lineage. There is a fear psychosis among everyone around.
Mir now reads reports, statement of minister to indicate there are detention centres in Assam.
Mir: This is not his creation. It never is. It never was. The essence of prosecution... is that you talk against us and sedition is on its way. #Sedition
Court asks SPP: Assuming what he said was in your view, bad or an extreme view point. Would you not say, something advocating fanciful idea. Or obnoxious.. Would that be sufficient enough to say that is sedition?
SPP: He is not the only one who have opposed this law. Mr Pujari (another counsel) gave a list of all those opposing it... Sharjeel Imam is not the only one who has advocated against the law. Merely because someone has agitated against it has been booked.
SPP: It is not a fanciful idea alone. He goes from point to point advocating this. He asks for blocking highways. There are chats to show, "Jo Sharjeel bhai ne kaha tha wo humne kar diye".
SPP: How episode of #RattanLal happened. One side of the road was blocked. We are talking about a person who has knowledge on riots. His knowledge has to be kept it mind when he is asking for chakka jam.
SPP: Consequences of chakka jam is violence. It is a calculated move.
Mir refers to prosecution's submission where Imam purportedly said "court ko naani yaad aani chahiye". "It is not calling for violence."
Mir: It is in the perspective when thousands of people collect on streets, court will take cognisance. Even SC sent mediators to Shaheen Bagh to talk and break the impasse.
Mir reads Imam's speech where he asked for staging protests and said "pareshani honi chahiye".
Mir: Farmers baithe hai 6 mahine se. Pareshani nahi ho rahi? Pareshani is a form of protest. How can it amount to sedition? #FarmersProtest #CAA_NRC #Sedition #SharjeelImam
Mir: Hum kisi ko maarenge nahi. Theek hai? What else should he say?... Investigating authority has not seen the speech of #KapilMishra? They have.
Court: I will be directing both of you to file written submission. What is he trying to tell? Suppose he was in a conference. What's your take?
Mir: Speech as it is talks about; certain parts of Constitution. He feels that these parts need to have a re-look. He is well within his rights. His belief is that whether absolute brute majoritarianism is good for democracy.
Mir: He said proportionality if representation of various communities. Multi lingual and diverse... Whether we should have a better situation or absolute majoritarianism. It is to university students where these ideas are debated. Political narratives certainly degraded.
Mir: We see which candidate to put where. Best candidate goes for a walk and another from a different is in. Sharjeel Imam appeals to university audience and seeks to debate. Ipso factor doesn't have any connection with NRC CAA.
Mir: Then he comes to protests at Shaheen Bagh. Main Golf Links main thode hee baith jaunga.
Mir: All challenges (against CAA, NRC) are admitted. Since he is someone goes to IIT Bombay. Then he comes and studies Modern History. He gets into social development and the challenges the society faces.
Mir: It is not necessary that a community based challenge is a seditious challenge. At no point he is calling for armed rebellion, secession.
Mir: We are duty bound to apply... Otherwise we are adopting the British legacy for muffling the press so that they don't rise against the British and remain under the elephant foot forever.
Mir: What is wrong with starting with as-salam-o-alaikum... Friendship, cooperation is for everybody. Then there is a caveat calling for non violent means. #SharjeelImam #Sedition
SPP Prasad: Intent is very clear - one he says we don't want to talk about secularism. He says India is not a democratic country. He tries to create anarchy saying there is no hope for Muslim community.
Prasad: Road block he does with special knowledge. There are large number of people who got together and then there is a violence. HC in one of the orders observed that these riots did not happen in the spur of the moment.
Mir: Road blocks have led to violence. Intent is that you don't believe in court, democracy, that is the entire gist.
Court: October 23 for clarifications. Then orders thereafter.
Correction: *SPP Prasad*: Road blocks have led to violence. Intent is that you don't believe in court, democracy, that is the entire gist.

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