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The Supreme Court of India, today issued notice to the Centre & the Jammu and Kashmir Administration on a Habeas Corpus petition filed by Mumtazunnisa Soz challenging detention of her husband and Senior Congress leader Saifuddin Soz since August last year.

Mr. P. Chidambaram and Dr. Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Senior Advocate appeared for the petitioner and argued that “House arrest happened without a single document. They contended that Mr. Saifuddin Soz is member of the national party and now he is 82-year-old.

A two-Judge bench of the Supreme Court comprised of Justice Arun Mishra & Justice Indira Banerjee heard the matter, whereby they issued notice to the Centre & the Jammu and Kashmir administration.

A Habeas Corpus petition was filed in the Supreme Court on the behalf of Dr. Saifuddin Soz, Former Union Minister and Senior Congress Leader, challenging his house arrest and prolonged detention since August 5, 2019.

Petition was filed by “Mrs. Mumtazunnisa Soz”, Wife of Dr. Saifuddin Soz (“Detenu”), invoking Article 32 of the Constitution of India seeking issuance of a writ in the nature of Habeas Corpus for the production of her husband, before the Supreme Court, and an appropriate writ for quashing the order(s) of detention passed by Government of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, Respondent No. 2, along with other directions.

The detenu was informed of his house arrest by the security guards of his house situated at Shehjar, Humhama Heights, Airport Avenue, Srinagar, Kashmir in the morning of 05.08.2019, when Central Government passed a Presidential Order revoking the status of the (erstwhile) State of Jammu and Kashmir granted under Article 370 and 35A of the Constitution of India. Ten months have passed since his first detention, and he is yet to be informed of his grounds of detention.

The petitioner said that his detention is wholly contrary and perverse to the constitutional safeguards laid down under Article 21 and 22 of the Constitution of India, as well as the law on preventive detention. Not only does it attract the vice of unconstitutionality, it is also in stark contravention of the statutory scheme of the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act, 1978 under which the detention has purportedly been made.

India Legal Bureau

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