Hathras case: Allahabad HC issues notice to Central, UP govts on petition against custody of CFI leader, jamia student and cab driver

The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday issued notices to the central government and Uttar Pradesh government on a Habeas Corpus petition filed by Atikur Rahman, national treasurer of Campus Front of India (CFI), Masud Khan, a student at Jamia Millia Islamia, and a cab driver Mohammad Alam, who were booked and arrested under draconian UAPA along with Malayalam journalist Siddique Kappan, while they were on their way to Hathras last month.

A Bench of Justices Pritinker Diwaker and SC Sharma has issued notices to the Central Government, the State of Uttar Pradesh, Superintendent of Mathura Jail, and Sub Inspector Prabal Pratap Singh.

The Court has listed the matter concerning release of three for hearing on December 14.

They were illegally detained on 5 October while they were travelling to meet the family of the 19-year-old Dalit woman from Hathras who was gangraped and murdured by upper-caste Hindu men. A day later, they were booked under sections of UAPA and sedition.

Many rights groups, community organisations and activists eariler condemned the arrests of Muslim youths and said the efforts of the Uttar Pradesh government appear to be to destroy evidence, scuttle the case and protect the perpetrators, dominant caste men of the Thakur community. They also said the targeting of Muslim activists and journalists is a wanton effort to deflect blame, colour the case and shield the real perpetrators.