Supreme Court seeks Centre’s reply on Vaiko Habeas Corpus for production of Farooq Abdullah
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Supreme Court seeks Centre’s reply on Vaiko Habeas Corpus for production of Farooq Abdullah

Shruti Mahajan

The Supreme Court today issued notice and sought the Centre’s reply in the Habeas Corpus petition filed by MDMK leader Vaiko for the production of National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah.

Counsel for Vaiko told the Court while the Ministry of Home Affairs has maintained that Abdullah is not under detention, there is no information available on him.

“We don’t know under which Act he has been detained. We don’t know if the constitutional provisions were followed or not”, Vaiko’s counsel said.

On being asked whether or not Abdullah is under detention, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the Court that he would have to take instructions on the same and added that the conference for which the petition was filed in the first place is over now.

The Bench of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi with Justices SA Bobde and S Abdul Nazeer however, went on to issue notice in the matter. SG Mehta opposed issuing of notice and urged that since the Centre was represented, issuing a formal notice was not necessary.

The Court has issued notice returnable in a week and fixed the next date of hearing for Monday.

Vaiko has prayed that the Court intervene so that Dr Abdullah may be allowed to travel to Chennai to attend an annual conference organised by the MDMK, which was scheduled to take place on September 15.

The petition was moved after Vaiko’s representation to government authorities dated August 29  failed to yield any response.

Therefore, Vaiko has now approached the Supreme Court contending that it would amount to a violation of the fundamental rights to free speech and expression if Dr Abdullah is not allowed to be released for attending the MDMK conference.

Vaiko has also registered protest over the continuing detention of political leaders in Jammu & Kashmir, contending that,

“… the Respondents have imposed an ‘undeclared emergency’ in the State of Jammu and Kashmr and have placed an entire state in lockdown for the past one month and has further dealt a body-blow by arresting democratically elected representatives who were instrumental in strengthening democracy in the State.

…there is conflict between power and liberty and the constitutional courts of the land ought to act as a ‘check and balance’ when the executive illegal usurps fundamental rights of lakhs of citizens instead of shielding the executive under the false pretext of national security and integrity.”

[Read Order]

Vaiko-vs-UOI-Farooq-Abdullah-Habeas-Corpus-Sept-16.pdf
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