The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked the Allahabad High Court to expedite the hearing in a habeas corpus petition filed by the mother of Dr. Kafeel Khan, seeking the release of her son.
Dr. Kafeel is under preventive detention in Uttar Pradesh’s Mathura jail since February 13 under the National Security Act, 1980 (NSA) for allegedly being a threat to public order.
A three-judge bench led by the Chief Justice of India (CJI) S. A. Bobde today was considering an application filed by the mother of Dr. Kafeel seeking direction to the High Court to expedite the disposal of habeas corpus.
The bench, after taking note of the matter, involving personal liberty, requested the High Court to dispose of the habeas corpus plea preferably within 15 days from the date when parties appear before the High Court.
Appearing for the petitioner, senior advocate Indira Jaising, submitted before the Court that the detention of Dr. Khan under NSA was a counter-blast to the bail he was granted by the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Aligarh on February 10 in connection with an FIR against him for alleged inflammatory speech in connection to Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
Jaising added that the State chose not to challenge the bail order but resorted to the NSA to bypass the bail order in order to keep the petitioner in jail.
On March 18, while hearing a plea challenging the detention order, the Supreme Court had transmitted the case to the Allahabad High Court forthwith.
However, despite several attempts, the case of the petitioner challenging the ‘illegal’ and ‘arbitrary’ detention of her son was not even registered throughout the month of April by the registry of the High Court.
Further, the plea filed through Advocate-on-Record Fuzail Ahmad Ayyubi assisted by advocate Ibad Mushtaq alleged that the case was registered by the High Court only in May. Even thereafter despite the filing of several urgency applications, the matter could not be listed for final hearing for one reason or another.
The matter was last heard on Aug 5 when the High Court directed the State Government to file a reply to the habeas corpus plea by August 19.
The Allahabad HC to hear a plea filed by the mother of Dr. Kafeel Ahmad Khan, challenging his detention under NSA, on August 19, by which date the UP Govt will have to file its reply.#KafeelKhanpic.twitter.com/X98vRy2xUM