The Hyderabad High Court has slapped a fine of Rs 25,000 on Chittoor Superintendent of Police G Srinivas for passing detention orders that were in violation of the provisions of the Preventive Detention (PD) Act.
According to a report in The New Indian Express, the bench was dealing with a petition filed by the wife of a detainee, Ajay Kumar, which sought to quash the detention order of the district collector and magistrate, Chittoor.
The petitioner alleged that besides the detention order, which was issued in Malayalam as her husband is from Kerala, several documents were provided only in English or Telugu.
According to the provisions of the PD act, it is mandatory for the authorities to provide all details regarding the detention of a person, in a language known to the detainee.
TNIE reported that the court was not satisfied with the submissions of respondent, and observed that "time and again, the SC and different HCs have reminded the detaining authorities that the documents relied upon have to be supplied in vernacular language or the language known to the petitioner."
The HC quashed the detention order.
This comes less than a week, after Andhra's neighboring state Telangana, was pulled up by the Supreme Court.
According to reports, the Telangana government had kept a suspect in jail under preventive detention law for nearly a year, on the 'suspicion' that he had stolen five sarees in Hyderabad.
“Where are we leading to? What is happening to this country? We have to see that people are not harassed by the state. We thought Telangana is a good state. Even if it is true that he had stolen five sarees, will you keep him in jail for a year in preventive detention. We are going to pass severe strictures if you are not going to give proper explanation for detaining this person," Chief Justice JS Khehar was quoted as saying.
The Andhra Pradesh Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Bootleggers, Dacoits, Drug Offenders, Goondas, Immoral Traffic Offenders and Land Grabbers Act, 1986, is used by both the Telugu states.
It has already been criticised in the past, as it allows the government to detain a person for almost a year without proper review.