Azam Khan’s Jauhar University: The Supreme Court on Thursday sought the Uttar Pradesh government’s response on compliance with its order by which it had stayed the bail condition imposed on Samajwadi Party MLA Azam Khan that land adjoining the Jauhar University campus will be attached in an alleged enemy property grabbing case.
Khan alleged that the Uttar Pradesh government has not removed the barbed wire fence from the university in Rampur, despite the stay order, and as a result, it cannot function properly.
A bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and JB Pardiwala said that the state government will file its response by July 19 and listed the matter for further hearing on July 22.
Additional Solicitor General SV Raju, appearing for the UP government, said that it was ex-parte order passed on May 27 by the top court and a barbed wire fence was already placed at that time.
“We have not done anything post-May 27. The barbed wire was already there”, he said. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Khan, said that the barbed wire fence needs to be removed as the University cannot function.
“The state authorities are in contempt by not removing the barbed wire fence as the court has stayed the proceeding”, he said, adding that he is willing to file a contempt plea against the state authorities. The bench gave the liberty to Sibal to file the contempt plea if he so wishes and said that when the stay order was granted, its consequences must follow.
On May 27, a vacation bench of the top court stayed the Allahabad High Court’s bail condition imposed on Khan directing the District Magistrate of Rampur to take possession of the land attached to the Jauhar University campus.
It had said that prima facie the Allahabad High Court’s bail condition imposed on Khan is disproportionate and sounds like a decree of a civil court.
The top court, while referring to the May 10 order of the High Court had said that it was opined that bail was being granted to the petitioner (Khan) on the ground of age and his health condition, apart from the fact that in most of the cases in which the prosecution was initiated against him, he has been bailed out.
It had then stayed a slew of directions of the High Court issued to the District Magistrate, Rampur to measure the land, take possession of the land attached to the University, and sought a response from the Uttar Pradesh government.
On May 24, the top court had agreed to hear a plea by Khan challenging a bail condition imposed by the Allahabad High Court, which he claimed is for demolishing a part of his Jauhar University allegedly built by grabbing enemy property.
Earlier, advocate Nizam Pasha, appearing for Khan, had mentioned the matter for urgent listing before the top court and said the high court has ordered the "demolition" of the university as a condition for interim bail, and now the district administration seeks to execute the order.
On May 10, the high court while granting interim bail to Khan directed the Rampur district magistrate to take possession of the enemy property attached to the campus of Jauhar University by June 30, 2022, and raise a boundary wall with barbed wire around it.
It had said that on completion of the mentioned exercise of taking possession of the land to the satisfaction of the DM, Rampur, the interim bail of
Azam Khan shall be converted into regular bail.
On May 19, the top court while exercising its powers under Article 142 of the Constitution granted Khan (73) interim bail in an alleged cheating case paving way for his release from prison. Khan, who is a Member of the Legislative Assembly from Rampur Sadar constituency, was lodged in the Sitapur jail of the State for more than two years.
An FIR was lodged at Azem Nagar police station in Rampur against Khan and others in 2019 for alleged grabbing of enemy property and misappropriation of public money of more than hundreds of crores of rupees.
It was alleged in the FIR that during partition one Imamuddin Qureshi went to Pakistan and his land was recorded as enemy property, but Khan in collusion with others grabbed the 13.842-hectare plot.
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