SC notice to govt over Omar Abdullah’s detention

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Friday issued a notice to Jammu and Kashmir administration on the detention of National Conference leader Omar Abdullah and asked it to file a reply by March 2.
The apex court was hearing a plea by Abdullah’s sister Sarah Abdullah Pilot against the detention of the former chief minister under the Public Safety Act (PSA), 1978.
“We were hopeful that, as this is a habeas corpus case, that the relief would be sooner. But we have full faith in the justice system. We’re here because we want that all Kashmiris should have the same rights as all citizen of India and we’re waiting for that day,” Pilot said after the court’s order.
Pilot had on February 10 approached the top court challenging her brother’s detention under the J-K Public Safety Act, 1978, saying the order of detention is “manifestly illegal” and there is no question of him being a “threat to the maintenance of public order”.
The plea has sought quashing of the February 5 order detaining Omar Abdullah, former chief minister of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, under the PSA and also sought his production before the court.
Pilot has said that exercise of powers by authorities under the CrPC to detain individuals, including political leaders, was “clearly mala fide to ensure that the opposition to the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution is silenced”.
It said that on the intervening night of August 4-5, 2019, Omar Abdullah was put under house arrest and it was later learnt that section 107 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), 1973 was invoked to justify such arrest.
Omar Abdullah, who has been junior foreign minister and commerce minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led Cabinet in 2000, was served with a three-page dossier in which he was alleged to have made statements in the past which were “subversive” in nature.
(With inputs from agencies)

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