Sharjeel Imam made false assault allegations to secure bail: Tihar in court

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Extra Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat observed that the imam said he otherwise felt safe in his current cell, but did not know why the incident happened.

The imam had alleged that the deputy superintendent along with “8-9 convicts came to the petitioner’s cell in the name of carrying out a search” and during this “unlawful search, the petitioner’s books, clothes were thrown and he was assaulted and called a terrorist and anti-national when he stopped them from throwing stuff.”

Authorities, in their status report filed in court, claimed the imam threatened to file bogus complaints against officials and punished him for breaking prison rules. They also claimed that “during the sentencing hearing, the defendant testified that he had filed a false complaint in an honorable court in order to keep his name prominent in the media…and said reports l ‘will help get bail’.

The imam’s lawyer, Barrister Ibrahim, told the Indian Express: “The situation report…is completely abhorrent. On July 20, CCTV footage will be shown in court and the truth will come out. Sharjeel was present in court today and explained to the court the tactics used by the prison authorities to control detainees, to ensure that no detainees approach the court again.

Imam’s request on the alleged assault had also stated that a search could not be carried out by prison staff with the assistance of convicts. The Superintendent of Central Jail Number 1, however, denied that a search operation cannot be carried out by convicts and only by Tamil Nadu Special Police (TSP) and relevant personnel.

The authorities explained that the superintendent must appoint “suitable, well-bred, medically fit, disciplined and dedicated convicts and defendants as prisoners’ officials to assist prison staff in carrying out various duties related to the proper management of various activities”.

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