United Against Hate, New Delhi based activists collective strongly condemned the arrest of Dr. Kafeel Khan and his brother twice in 24 hours in Bahraich district of Uttar Pradesh.
Dr. Kafeel Khan was arrested by the Bahraich police in Uttar Pradesh after he examined the children admitted to the district hospital on Saturday. The hospital was in the news recently after reports surfaced that over 70 children had died in 45 days due to a mysterious fever. After getting bail, the next day (23rd September), the local police again arrested him, and his brother in a nine-year-old case for allegedly opening an account in a bank using fake documents.
Here, the statement of United Against Hate.
The relentless attack by the vindictive Yogi government of UP. Dr. Kafeel was detained from Bahraich Govt. hospital and was kept confined in a guest house by the UP police for more than four hours on the 22nd of September. He was slapped with charges like ‘creating disorder in the public functioning of a government institution.’ In reality, Dr. Kafeel had visited the hospital to talk to patients there since he suspected an outbreak of Japanese encephalitis has taken place in Bahraich which has killed more than 40 infants already. The hospital authority was not ready to acknowledge the outbreak of JE as they were not equipped enough to counter the epidemic. Instead, they called it a ‘mysterious fever.’ Dr. Kafeel Khan wanted to call the bluff on this and had called a press conference. However, soon after he was talking to the patients and was confirmed that this ‘mysterious fever’ was nothing but JE, he was whisked away from the hospital and taken to an undisclosed location. He was not allowed to even speak to his family members for more than four hours. Finally, he was produced in front of the magistrate from where he secured his bail.
On 23rd of September, once again evoking an old case of cheque bounce, Dr. Kafeel and his brother Adeel Khan were once again taken in custody. This time the cases slapped on him included sections 419, 420, 467, 468, 471 and strangely also 120B which amounts to the criminal conspiracy. They have been denied bail and have been sent to judicial custody.
Dr. Kafeel Khan has faced continuous harassment and torture from the Yogi government since the tragedy of outbreak of Japanese encephalitis which killed more than 200 infants in Gorakhpur BRD hospital, due to lack of oxygen, in 2017. Dr. Kafeel and some other doctors were made the scapegoat of the incident whereas it was a case of administrative failure that failed to procure oxygen for the hospital. Dr. Kafeel was particularly targeted because of his religious identity by the communal rogue government of Yogi Adityanath. He had to spend almost eight months in jail before getting bail from High Court. Since then the suspension of Dr. Kafeel has not been lifted and he is not allowed to practice in the BRD Hospital. In June 2018, his Brother Kashif Jameel was shot by unidentified men in Gorakhpur.
The yogi government is constantly lodging attacks on Dr. Kafeel who has fearlessly exposed the condition of public health in UP which is in shambles. The relentless slapping of cases and murderous attacks on his family are sinister tactics by the Yogi Government to silence him. We strongly condemn these obnoxious tactics by Yogi to harass a pro-people doctor like Dr. Kafeel Khan and demand his immediate release.