JAMMU, Sept 22: Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh High Court has quashed the detention under Public Safety Act of Ravinder Gupta alias Gola Shah.
After hearing both the sides, Justice Rajnesh Oswal observed, “ours is a democratic country and the personal liberty of the individual cannot be curtailed except according to the procedure established by law”.
“If the law provides for curtailment of personal liberty under certain contingencies/conditions, then such conditions/contingencies must exist, then only, the personal liberty of an individual can be curtailed and that too according to the procedure prescribed by the law”,. High Court said, adding “the perusal of detention order reveals that in all the FIRs, the allegations against the petitioner are with regard to the commission of offences, which do not fall within the realm of “public order” as defined by Section 8(3) of the Act as there are no allegations against the petitioner regarding his activities affecting public at large”.
“In view of the decision of Apex Court the argument of Amit Gupta that land grabbing would fall within the meaning of “mischief” loses its force. Thus, this court is of the considered view that the alleged activities even if are considered as true, still the same do not fall within the purview of the activities prejudicial to the maintenance of public order as defined in 8 (3) (b) of the Act”, Justice Oswal said, adding “also, a perusal of the detention order reveals that the respondent has not shown his/her awareness about the arrest of the petitioner in FIR No. 53/2022 though the arrest of the petitioner in the FIR has been mentioned in the dossier”.
“This issue is no longer res Integra that a person who is already in custody in some substantive offence, can still be detained provided that the detaining authority is of the opinion on the basis of the material placed on record before the detaining authority by the sponsoring agency that the petitioner is in custody, there is likelihood of the detenue being released on bail and further that after being enlarged on bail, there is every likelihood that he would indulge in similar criminal activities”, High Court said.
Stating that the detention order is not sustainable in the eyes of law, High Court quashed the same.