The Supreme Court on Tuesday said that one cannot be detained forever and asked the Central Government whether the detention of former Jammu and Kashmir(J&K) Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti can be extended beyond one year? This remark was made by a bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul during the hearing on the petition of Iltija Mufti who is under the custody order of her mother and the leader of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) under the Public Safety Act (PSA) and its subsequent extension.
Justice Kaul asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, “How long have Mufti been in custody and on what basis?” The bench specifically wanted to know if the detention could be extended beyond one year, Mehta while justifying the detention said that it was done on the basis of public order.
Justice Kaul said the court wanted to know how long such detention could be extended, “could it be for a very long time?” Mehta urged the court not to record any observation, to which Justice Kaul said that these are questions of the Observation Court, Mehta said that I will answer the questions based on the facts and the law.
The Solicitor General cited statements made by Mufti as having an effect on the public order, Justice Kaul replied that sometimes one can say a lot of things, which should not be said. Mehta said such things should not be said in a state that has a history of terrorism, the apex court allowed the Center to file an answer in the case regarding the maximum period of detention whether there is a proposal to continue detention or not. The apex court has scheduled further hearing of the case for October 15.