The Jammu and Kashmir High Court Friday quashed the preventive detention under the Public Safety Act (PSA) of human rights activist Khurram Parvez and directed the government to release him forthwith saying he was not given an opportunity to make a representation. Justice M H Attar, while quashing the detention order passed by District Magistrate Srinagar Farooq Ahmad Lone on September 19, directed the state respondents to release Parvez “forthwith from preventive custody”.
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The court came down on the detaining authority, saying while it had referred to material record like dossier and “other connecting documents”, nothing has been spelt out either in the detention order or in the reply affidavit before the bench. The court observed that the detainee was not provided all documents on which the detaining authority had passed the detention orders.
“The detenu in these circumstances has been deprived of the opportunity of making an effective representation against his detention in terms of Article 22(5) of the Constitution of India. Breach of this constitutional safeguard alone is sufficient to invalidate the impugned order of detention,” Justice Attar said.
Parvez was arrested on September 16 during a massive crackdown on separatists and booked under PSA for allegedly inciting people to protest and raise slogans. The court said it was not specified in the complaint what type of slogans was Parvez asking the people to raise.
“On the basis of allegations contained in the complaint and the statements of police personnel to support the complaint, it appears no offence was committed by the detenu.” The court also chided police for mentioning wrong parentage of the detenu in the complaint saying “in essence, these allegations are made against some other persons and not the detenu as his (Parvez’s) parentage is Parvaiz Ahmad Sheikh and nor Manzoor Ahmad. Even residential address of the detenu is different.”