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Amid clamour for release, Dr Kafeel Khan's detention extended

Dr Kafeel Khan was arrested in January for delivering the speech at Aligarh Muslim University on December 10, 2019

Sunday August 16, 2020 9:45 PM, ummid.com with inputs from IANS

Dr Kafeel Khan

Lucknow: Amid clamour for his release, the Uttar Pradesh government has extended, by three months, the detention of Dr Kafeel Khan under the National Security Act (NSA) for his alleged provocative speech during an anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests.

Khan was arrested in January for delivering the speech at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) on December 10, 2019.

This is the second time his detention under the stringent law has been extended by another three months, this time beyond August 13.

Under the NSA, people can be detained without a charge for up to 12 months if authorities are satisfied that they are threat to the national security or law and order.

"Enough reasons to keep him in jail"

In an order dated August 4, the UP Home Department said the NSA was invoked against Khan on February 13, 2020, on the orders of the Aligarh District Magistrate.

The matter was then sent to the advisory council, which in its report, said there are "enough reasons" to keep Khan in jail following which orders were given on May 6, to extend his detention under the NSA by three months, that is till August 13, the order said.

Acting on the report of council and the report from the District Magistrate, Aligarh, Governor Anandiben Patel, using the powers vested in her, directed that the detention of Kafeel Khan be further extended by three more months.

"As a result, Kafeel Khan will remain in jail till November 13, 2020," the order said.

Khan was booked under IPC section 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion).

FIR against Dr Kafeel

The FIR registered against him states that his speech threatened to disrupt the harmony between the communities and was also likely to create a law and order situation.

Later, sections 153B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national integration) and 505(2) (statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill will between classes) of the Indian Penal Code were added to the FIR.

The doctor, who is currently lodged in Mathura jail, had first hit the headlines in August 2017 when several children died at the BRD Medical College in Gorakhpur, where he worked as a paediatrician.

Though he was later given a clean chit in a departmental probe, the government did not reinstate him.

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