CHENNAI: The Madras High Court has set aside the detention orders of the Coimbatore City Police Commissioner passed in October last year, detaining two Sri Lankan refugees under the National Security Act (NSA).
By an order dated October 8, 2013, T Sathishkumar alias Mandapam Sathish was detained under the NSA. By another order dated October 3, B Sivashankar alias Shankar was detained under the same. The charge against them was that they collected huge sums on the promise of transporting refugees in the camps in Coimbatore to Australia. But, they neither sent the refugees to Australia nor returned the money.
Following complaints, they were arrested and later detained under the NSA. Allowing their habeas corpus writ petitions, a Division Bench of Justices V Dhanapalan and G Chockalingam observed that the detaining authority has merely stated that there is a real possibility of the detainees coming out on bail and hence, the impugned detention orders are vitiated and the same are liable to be set aside on the ground of absence of cogent materials for arriving at the conclusion.
There was also a delay in considering their representation, which would deprive their right under Article 22 of the Constitution and also the right to consider the representation under Article 22(5), the judges said.
However, considering the gravity of the charges, HC said it is open to the prosecution to effectively contest the matter before the regular court. The Bench made it also clear that this order shall not confer any right or advantage whatsoever to the detainees to claim anything before the regular court.