Allahabad, August 20: The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday adjourned hearing on the plea challenging the detention of Dr Kafeel Khan under the stringent National Security Act (NSA) till August 24.

The Gorakhpur doctor was arrested on January 29 for an alleged provocative speech against the Citizenship Amendment Act at Aligarh Muslim University in December last year.

The Uttar Pradesh government had earlier extended his detention by three months till November 13.

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

The High Court bench comprising Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Samit Gopal on Wednesday adjourned the hearing on the request of the counsel for the petitioner who sought time to file a reply to the affidavit submitted on behalf of the state government, NDTV reported.

Granting time to the petitioner’s counsel, the court said it will dispose of the plea on August 24. The petition was filed by Dr Khan’s mother Nuzhat Parween.

The court had earlier directed the Union and state governments to file a reply against the plea seeking the release of Dr Khan.

According to the plea, Dr Khan was earlier granted bail by a court and he was supposed to be released. However, the NSA was imposed against him. Hence, his detention was illegal, the plea said.

Dr Khan is currently lodged in a Mathura jail. The doctor had earlier faced arrest following the deaths of over 60 children in a week at a government hospital in UP’s Gorakhpur in 2017.

About two years later, a state government probe cleared Dr Khan of all major charges, prompting him to seek an apology from the Uttar Pradesh government.

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