SC issues notices to Centre, JK Govt on Mian Qayoom’s plea against detention order

New Delhi, June 26 : The Supreme Court on Friday issued notices to the Centre and the Jammu and Kashmir Government on the petition of Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association President Mian Abdul Qayoom  challenging a High Court order of May 28 that upheld his detention.

In an interim direction, a bench comprising Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and BR Gavai also directed the Tihar Jail authorities to provide summer clothing and daily essentials to Qayoom while he is under detention. Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave, representing Qayoom, contended before the top court that his client was brought from the Union Territory to Tihar, and therefore had only winter clothing. The apex court has listed the matter for further hearing in July. Qayoom was detained under the Public Safety Act ahead of the revocation of Article 370 and 35A in the then state of Jammu and Kashmir on August 5 last year.

The plea contended that the High Court verdict is ex facie unsustainable in law as it is premised on stale, irrelevant, remote, vague, imprecise and deficient grounds of detention. “In Paras 23 and 28 of the impugned judgment, the High Court makes it abundantly clear that the detention order has been upheld solely on one ground — the four FIRs dating back to 2008 and 2010 — as enumerated in the detention order. These FIRs are stale, irrelevant and have no proximate, pertinent or live link to the present, and are thus superfluous and extraneous to the satisfaction required in law qua the tendency or propensity to act in a manner prejudicial to public order,” the petitioner averred.

The plea contended that the constitutional imperative of Article 22(5) of the Constitution requires that in addition to the grounds, all the facts and material based on which a preventive detention order has been passed shall be supplied to the detenu. “In the present case, the detenu/petitioner was undisputably supplied with only 10 leaves, which included copies of PSA warrant, grounds of detention, the four FIRs of 2008 and 2010, and a letter addressed to the detenu,” claimed the petitioner.

Qayoom argued that he is more than 70 years of age and suffering from life-threatening heart ailments with arterial blockade to the extent of 55-60%, and uncontrolled blood sugar apart from living with a single kidney that is further aggravated by urethral stricture.

“Furthermore, because of the bullet injury sustained in 1995, the detenu suffered cervical vertebral column injury and there is a degeneration in cervical and limb spine for which the detenu is on medication,” said the plea.

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