Following an order of the Allahabad High Court, Dr Kafeel Khan was released from Mathura jail late on Tuesday night, his lawyer said.
"Uttar Pradesh govt kept me in jail for 8 months under a fictitious case and did not give me food for 5 days. I thank the UP STF who brought me from Mumbai to Mathura and did not kill me in an encounter. I thank them," Dr. Kafeel said upon his release.
The Allahabad High Court on Tuesday quashed Khan's detention under the National Security Act and ordered his immediate release.
"Mathura jail administration informed at around 11.00 pm that Dr Kafeel will be released, and at around midnight, he was released," Khan's lawyer Irfan Ghazi said.
The bench, comprising Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Saumitra Dayal Singh, passed the order on a petition filed by Khan's mother Nuzhat Parveen.
The petition alleged that Khan was granted bail in February by a competent court and he was supposed to be released on bail. However, he was not released for four days and the NSA was subsequently invoked against him. Hence, his detention was illegal, the petition argued.
Khan was in jail since January after he delivered a speech at the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) during the anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) protests in December last year.
The court said that prima facie, the speech did not disclose any efforts to promote hatred or violence. "It also nowhere threatens peace and tranquillity of the city of Aligarh. The address gives a call for national integrity and unity among the citizens. The speech also deprecates any kind of violence. It appears that the District Magistrate had selective reading and selective mention for few phrases from the speech ignoring its true intent,” the court stated.
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