Judge Who Freed Activist Sharjeel Imam Withdraws from Jamia Violence Case

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NEW DELHI — A Delhi court judge, who recently discharged student activists Sharjeel Imam and Asif Iqbal Tanha, along with nine others in the 2019 Jamia Nagar violence case, has recused himself from hearing a similar matter, citing “personal reasons,” reports PTI.

Additional Sessions Judge Arul Varma was hearing a case regarding the violence in Jamia Nagar in December 2019, which was registered against several accused, including Mr Tanha.

“Due to personal reasons, the undersigned hereby recuses from hearing the matter. Accordingly, let the present matter be put up before the principal district and sessions judge, southeast district, Saket court, for February 13 at 12 pm with a request to transfer the matter,” the judge said in an order passed on Friday.

Last Saturday, while discharging the 11 accused in the other case, the judge had said that legal proceedings were initiated in a “perfunctory and cavalier fashion” and “allowing them to undergo the rigmarole of a long-drawn trial, does not augur well for the criminal justice system of the country”.

Delhi Police had registered an FIR in connection with the violence that erupted after a clash between the police, and people protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in December 2019.

The accused in the present case also include Meeran Haider, Ashu Khan, Qasim Usmani, Mohammad Hassan, Mohd Jamal, Mohd Sahil Muddassir, Faheem Hasmee, Sameer Ahmad, Mohd Umar, Mohd Adil, Roohul Ameer, Chandan Kumar, and Saqib Khan.

The Jamia Nagar police station had registered an FIR under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with a deadly weapon), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions) and 332 (Voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty). 

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