New Delhi, Feb
26: The Supreme Court on Wednesday sought response of the Jammu and Kashmir
(J&K) administration on a plea challenging former chief minister Mehbooba
Mufti’s detention under the Public Safety Act (PSA).
A bench headed by
Justice Arun Mishra also asked Iltija Mufti, daughter of the PDP chief, to give
an undertaking stating that she has not filed any other petition before another
judicial forum, including the high court, challenging the detention of her
Iltija had filed
a habeas corpus (bring the person) petition in the apex court challenging the
government’s order issued on February 5 for invoking the PSA provision against
Mehbooba Mufti to keep her in detention.
Habeas corpus is
a writ seeking production of a person, who has allegedly been in illegal
detention, before a court.
The bench has now
posted the plea for hearing on March 18.
During the brief
hearing, lawyer Nitya Ramakrishnan appearing for Iltija, said the impugned
dossier, which formed the basis for invocation of the PSA, was “manifestly
biased slanderous, libellous” against the former Jammu and Kashmir chief
She also said
that a person cannot be deprived of fundamental freedom and personal liberty on
The bench asked
the lawyer to give an affidavit as to whether Iltija or somebody else has filed
any other petition in the high court against the detention order.
replied in negative and undertook to file an affidavit in this regard in a day
She also said
that Mehbooba Mufti has been accused of creating fear among the majority of the
population and playing “cheap politics”.
She said that not
a single incident of incitement has been referred in the dossier by the administration
and the PDP chief has been wrongly put under detention under the PSA.
Earlier, the same
bench had issued notice to the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory administration
on a similar plea filed against the government notification invoking the PSA
against former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah.
Abdullah, besides two political leaders from the National Conference and its
arch-rival PDP, were booked under the PSA by the administration on February 6,
barely hours before their six-month-long “preventive detention” was to come to
The grounds of
detention against Abdullah claim that on the eve of a reorganisation of the
state, he had allegedly made attempts to provoke general masses against the
revocation of provisions of Articles 370 and Article 35A.