From Our Special Correspondent

Chandigarh: Punjab and Haryana High Court quashed the detention of S. Simrajit Singh Mann under National Security Act. Mr. Mann was Group Commander of Industrial Security Force, Bombay, when he resigned in protest against the Army attack on the Golden Temple. He is now convener of the United Akali Dal. In the order the High Court instructed the government to immediately release Mr. Mann, who is lodged in Bharatpur jail in Rajasthan. The High Court bench hearing the appeal filed by Mrs. Gurinder Kaur wife of S. Simranjit Singh also declared some sections of the National Security Act relating to the detention of an individual without assigning any reason from six months to a vears ultra vires of the Constitution. Arguing on behalf of Mr. Mann, Shri Ram Jethmalanee said that there were no serious charges against S. Simranjit Singh. He further said that the act of writing letters on to the Prime Minister and the President did not express one’s opinion was fundamental to a democratic order. He also clarified that there was no charge of taking part in the violent activities against his client. He further said that there was no proof that his client could pose danger to the unity and integrity of the country. Prosecution counsels appearing on behalf of the Punjab government and the Central government, however, strongly opposed Mr. Mann’s release and they charged that he could pose a danger to the unity and integrity of the country.

It is not known yet whether the State or Central government would go in appeal to the Supreme Court against the decision.

Article extracted from this publication >>  December 13, 1985