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HindustanTimes Wed,27 Aug 2014

Detention order illegal, Sahara chief tells SC

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 13, 2014
First Published: 00:50 IST(13/3/2014) | Last Updated: 01:50 IST(13/3/2014)

Jailed Sahara Chief Subrata Roy on Wednesday challenged his detention ordered by a two-member bench calling it “illegal and unconstitutional.”

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In a fresh petition filed before the Supreme Court, Roy has demanded his release and sought the March 4 order sending him to jail be declared as void.

A bench of Justices KS Radhakrishnan and JS Khehar told Roy’s counsel Ram Jethmalani that it would hear the matter on Thursday.

“It is a little embarrassing to argue before you as your order needs rectification,” Jethmalani told the bench. He also said: “It’s a deep embarrassment for me but if the lordship is willing to hear then I would make my lordships quite satisfied with my arguments.”

At this Justice Khehar said: “We will go through the pleadings then say whether we are embarrassed or not.” The bench refused to express any view on the matter.  Roy’s advocates mentioned the matter in the morning before a bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam who referred it for an urgent hearing before the special bench.    

The habeas corpus meant to seek a direction to produce a prisoner before the court to ascertain whether his detention is lawful or not, was filed after the special bench did not sit on Tuesday to hear the matter. On March 4, the two-judge bench had sent Roy and two company directors to Tihar jail after the company failed to refund around Rs. 20,000 to its investors.

The court had even directed Roy and the directors’ production on March 11. It, however, gave liberty to the company to seek an early hearing if it had a proposal to refund. On March 7, the special bench rejected the plan to return the money in three-monthly installments and sought time till July 2015 for the same.

In a hard-hitting petititon, Roy submitted that detaining him was “purely illegal, contrary to the procedure prescribed by law and against the principles of natural justice.”


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