The Uttar Pradesh Government has approached the Supreme Court challenging the order of the Allahabad High Court quashing Dr. Kafeel Khan’s detention under the National Security Act (NSA).
The state has contended that Dr. Kafeel had a history of committing various offences, which had led to disciplinary action, his suspension from service, registration of FIRs against him and the invocation of NSA.
The plea which has also been joined by the Central Government goes on to allege that Dr. Kafeel despite being warned of the imposition of Section 144 of the CrPC in the area around Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) and the order of the Allahabad High Court banning the holding any kind of dharna and rally within 100 metres of AMU, chose to ignore the orders and deliver a provocative speech to students gathered near the Bab-e-Syed Gate of AMU with an attempt to disturb the law and order in Aligarh by inciting Muslim students of AMU against other communities.
It added that due to the speech of Dr. Kafeel, on December 13, 2019, about 10000 AMU students attempted to march towards Aligarh city and had to be stopped by the police administration.
“Had the violent student not been talked to stopped, this crowd would have disturbed the public order and the communal harmony of the district by entering Aligarh city”, UP government contends.
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It asserted that the petitioner portrayed himself as a victim who had suffered at the hands of the State and authorities.
The plea stated that Dr. Kafeel’s detention was based on the subjective satisfaction of the District Magistrate ate Aligarh and the same was not opened for examination by the High court.
Speaking to The Leaflet, Dr. Kafeel said he was surprised that the government went to the extent of appealing against his release in the Supreme Court. He added that the very basis of imposing NSA on him was the LIU report which indicated he would go to Aligarh again if released.
“Ever since I have come out of prison on September 1, I have not even gone into the territory of Uttar Pradesh let alone going to Aligarh. I have been writing letters to the Government to revoke my suspension so that I could start my practice and work as a Corona warrior”, Dr. Kafeel told The Leaflet.
The Allahabad High Court on September 1 quashed the NSA detention of Dr. Kafeel Khan and termed his detention order bad in law.
The High Court observed that a complete reading of the speech given by Dr. Kafeel at AMU on which the detention was based prima facie did not disclose any effort to promote hatred or violence.
The HC said it was only after passing of the bail order by the CJM, Aligarh, the police officials and the District Magistrate, Aligarh initiated the process for detaining Dr. Kafeel Khan under the NSA.
“From December 12, 2019 to January 29, 2020, Dr. Kafeel was roaming free and he had ample time to make all the efforts to damage public order in the city of Aligarh, if he was intending to do so”, the Court observed.
Last month, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) wrote a letter to the Uttar Pradesh government regarding the suspension of Dr. Kafeel Khan. It asked the government to consider Dr. Kafeel’s plight with compassion and merit, and also to consider the matter regarding his suspension.
Earlier this month, the Academy of Pediatrics (IAP), the largest body of pediatricians in India, also released a statement supporting Dr. Kafeel and seeking revocation of his suspension.
The article was originally published in The Leaflet.