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In jail since Jan for anti-CAA protest, Dr Kafeel Khan calls prison ‘a living hell’

By Our Representative
In a hand-written letter from the Mathura prison, Dr Kafeel Khan, unveiling the torturous conditions of inmates amidst the pandemic, has said, "In a jail made for 534 inmates, there are 1,600 people kept with one barrack holding at least 100-125 of us. There are just 4-6 toilets.”
Dr Khan is in jail since January 2020 for a speech where he criticized the government during the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests. Though he was granted bail on February 10 by a court in Aligarh, the UP government invoked the National Security Act (NSA) against him to ensure his continuous incarceration.
The four page letter highlights the inmates’ daily struggle –- living in indescribable filth, surviving on unpalatable meals and living with the threat to life due to congestion and no social distancing. Dr Khan writes, “With just one attached toilet, 125-150 inmates, the smell of their sweat and urine mixed with unbearable heat due to electricity cuts makes life hell over here: A living hell indeed."
He adds, "I try to read but cannot focus due to suffocation. It sometimes feels that I might fall due to dizziness caused by that suffocation. So I keep on drinking water.”

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