The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday adjourned hearing till August 24 on a plea challenging the detention of Dr Kafeel Khan under the National Security Act, PTI reported. Khan was arrested on January 29 for allegedly making inflammatory remarks during a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act at the Aligarh Muslim University in December.
The High Court bench, comprised of Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Samit Gopal, adjourned the hearing on the request of the counsel of Khan’s mother Nuzhat Parween, who is the petitioner in the case. The counsel sought more time to file a reply to the affidavit submitted by the state government.
In its Wednesday order, the High Court noted that the hearing in the case has regularly been deferred because of repeated adjournments sought by the petitioner’s counsel, Live Law reported. The counsel had sought adjournments on June 1, June 8, June 10, June 16, July 7 and July 27, the court added.
The matter was then heard on August 5 when the division bench gave the state 10 days to file its reply in the case.
Khan was granted bail earlier on February 10. However, he was not released from Mathura jail. Instead, the NSA was invoked against him three days later and his detention was extended. The plea filed by the Gorakhpur doctor’s mother said his detention was “illegal”. Khan’s detention was also earlier extended by three months till November 13.
On August 12, the Supreme Court asked the Allahabad High Court to decide on a petition related to Khan’s release within 15 days.
Khan was a paediatrician at the Baba Raghav Das Medical College and Hospital in Gorakhpur, when 63 children died in 2017 due to lack of oxygen. He was suspended from his post and jailed for nine months after a criminal case of medical negligence, corruption and dereliction of duty was filed against him. But an Uttar Pradesh government inquiry last year cleared him of all charges and lauded his actions to save lives during the crisis.