Human Rights

SC issued 4 weeks’ notice to Government of India to file Status Report on PaK prisoners in Indian jails

New Delhi: Supreme Court of India Tuesday directed Union of India to file Status Report on the detention of Pakistani-Pak administered Kashmir and foreign prisoners detained in the Indian jails.

The Supreme Court of India issued this notice on a writ petition filed by Prof. Bhim Singh in person against the illegal, unconstitutional and improper detention/trials of foreign prisoners by the Government of Jammu and Kashmir for the past over 15 years who have been languishing in the Indian prisons including J&K.

Many of the prisoners have completed the respective sentences and many of them have been kept in detention by the J&K Government for years under the detention law in J&K called ‘Public Safety Act’ without trial.

The Supreme Court has been hearing writ petition against the illegal detention of more than 1000 prisoners from Pakistan and its administered Kashmir.

Nearly 700 of them were released by the intervention of the Supreme Court of India which had issued direction to the Union of India and Government of J&K to release all those prisoners from Pakistan, PaK or other countries who had exhausted their respective sentences or who have been detained in violation of Article 21 of the Constitution of India which commands that no person shall be deprived of his life or liberty without procedure established by law.

The Supreme Court of India by its order dated 03.05.2017 directed, “Union of India had filed Status Report which is in the form of additional affidavit dated 19thApril, 2016. Let this report be updated and a latest report in this behalf be filed before the next date of hearing. State of Jammu and Kashmir may also file a report to the same effect.”

Prof. Bhim Singh submitted before the Division Bench of the Supreme Court comprising of Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan that State of J&K had filed reply which is incomplete as no details of the proceedings of the prisoners of the Pakistani/PaK has been given nor there is any procedure followed by the Union of India.

He said that 15 Pakistanis including some PaK residents have been detained under Public Safety Act (Detention Law) in total violation of Article 21 of Constitution of India.

Advocate Prof. Bhim Singh also made strong protest that there are 23 prisoners (from Pakistan/PaK) who have not been deported in spite of the orders of the Supreme Court of India. Similarly there are three detenus who have been recommended for deportation but are still in prison.

There are some 15 prisoners who are undergoing sentences for years without any appeal in the superior courts. The Government also informed the Supreme Court that there were 43 prisoners of Pakistan and PaK who are facing trials and investigation.

Prof. Bhim Singh submitted before the Supreme Court to give final chance to the Government of J&K as well as to the Union of India to file their replies so that the matter may be heard by the Supreme Court of India.


(With inputs from CNS)

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