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Justice Kaul remarked that Qayoom has been in prison for long enough and "his ideology remains the same".
The Supreme Court today asked the government of Jammu & Kashmir if the prolonged detention of Jammu & Kashmir High Court Bar Association President Mian Abdul Qayoom was required even as his detention period of one year is about to expire on August 7.
The petition challenging the decision of the Jammu & Kashmir High Court to uphold Qayoom's preventive detention was taken up for hearing by the Bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Indu Malhotra today. The Court had earlier sought the J&K government's response on the same.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta sought a period of ten more days from the Court in order to file the response. Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave, representing Qayoom, questioned if such delays were reasonable in a matter involving the writ of Habeas Corpus.
Dave told the Court that Qayoom is 73 years of age and has been in prison for about a year now. The period of his detention will stand expired on August 7. Despite his old age and susceptibility to the coronavirus, Qayoom continues to be incarcerated and lodged in prison at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic is spreading fast, Dave submitted.
At this juncture, Justice Kaul remarked that Qayoom has been in prison for long enough and "his ideology remains the same". All the earlier FIRs against Qayoom date as far back as 2010, the Court further pointed out. It added,
Mehta, seeking to argue that Qayoom's ideology is against national interest, sought ten days' time from the Court. The matter, however, will be heard next on July 23, the Court said.