Custodial death of Altaf: Allahabad HC directs second autopsy

The Allahabad High Court on Thursday directed a second autopsy of the body of Muslim youth Altaf -who was died during police custody in Uttar Pradesh’s Kasganj- by a team of doctors from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi.

The court was hearing the plea moved by Chand Miyan, father of the Altaf, seeking a CBI probe and second autopsy in the matter.

The court further directed the Magistrate concerned holding the ministerial inquiry to proceed with it expeditiously and to bring it to its conclusion expeditiously preferably within a period of four weeks, Live Law reported.

Altaf shall be exhumed forthwith in the presence of Senior Superintendent of Police / Superintendent of Police, Kasganj, the court said. Further, it has been directed that the body, after it has been exhumed, shall be sealed and immediately transported to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi, where a post-mortem examination of the exhumed body shall be conducted in presence of a team of Doctors to be constituted by the Director of All India Medical Sciences, Delhi, Live Law reported.

In November – 2021- 21-year-old Altaf from Nagla Sayyad Ahroli was accused of eloping with a girl from Hindu community. On November 8, he was taken to Sadar police station for questioning in Kasganj, where he allegedly died while in custody. The police had claimed that Altaf died by hanging – but the  police’s claims raised many questions. 

How can a 5 foot man hang himself by a pipe that was approximately 2 feet long. Altaf’s mother alleged that her son was murdered in the police custody.

The family demanded a CBI investigation into the matter. The Uttar Pradesh government had announced the launch of a magisterial investigation into the death.

Altaf died in police custody three months ago, but Altaf’s father, Chand Miyan, says, “we demanded a proper investigation, but nothing has been done yet, nobody contacted us.” The Samajwadi Party paid us Rs. 5 lakh, but no one from the police authority approached us.” 

Altaf, according to Chand Miyan, is the family’s main breadwinner: “I don’t keep well, I’m sick most of the time – people around us help us financially.” 

Altaf’s uncle, Mohd Aijaz, told Maktoob that the Uttar Pradesh police contacted the family in January and asked them to appear in court. 

“We were asked to give a statement in front of the judge in January, but when we went as per the notice, the judge wasn’t there, so we had to go again the next day – we gave our statement, but it’s been over 15 days and we still haven’t received any information on the case,” Aijaz stated.