Inderjeet & ANR.
Vs. Union of India & Ors.  INSC 1325 (7 August 2008)
Inderjeet and ANR. Vs.
Union of India and Ors.
AUGUST 7, 2008 [Dr.
Arijit Pasayat and Dr. Mukundakam Sharma, JJ] The Judgment of the Court was
delivered by Dr. ARIJIT PASAYAT, J.
the present appeals, challenge is to the order of detention passed under
Section 3(1) of the Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of
Smuggling Activities Act, 1974, (hereinafter referred to as `the Act').
The said order was
passed on the ground that gold was being smuggled from abroad by the Inderjeet
Singh, the appellant No.1. He and the other appellant - Varinder Singh were
intercepted on 17.12.1999 in the Customs Arrival Hall at Netaji Subhash Chandra
Bose International Airport, Calcutta. They were found smuggling 77 pieces of
gold bars of foreign origin weighing about 8.816 Kg. and valued at about Rs.39
Lacs. A representation was made to the detaining authorities to revoke the
detention. Representation was also made to the Advisory Board and to the
Central Government. The representations were considered and rejected. Writ
petitions were filed before the Delhi High Court which were numbered as
Criminal Writ Petition Nos.477 of 2000 and 479 of 2000. The main ground of
challenge was that the Central Government did not dispose of the
representations within a reasonable time when the second representation was
made. Strong reliance was Kerala and Anr. (44 (1991) Delhi Law Times - 1. The
High Court found that the Lt. Governor, Delhi and Anr. (1999 (4) SCC 228) had
no application. Therefore, the writ petitions were dismissed. Subsequently, an
application for review of the order dated 18.12.2000 was filed which was also
in these appeals is to the aforesaid orders of the High Court.
appears for the appellants.
have heard learned counsel for the Union of India and respondent No.3 - the
Superintendent of the Central Jail.
this juncture, it would be relevant to note that the ratio in Smt. Gracy's (AIR
2001 SC 301). It was inter-alia observed as follows:
"A perusal of
the aforesaid Section and other relevant provisions of the Act makes it
abundantly clear that no duty is cast upon the Advisory Board to furnish the
whole of the record and the representation addressed to it only to the
Government along with its report prepared under Section 8(c) of the Act. It may
be appropriate for the Board to transmit the whole record along with the
report, if deemed expedient but omission to send such record or report would
not render the detention illegal or cast an obligation upon the appropriate
government to make inquiries for finding out as to whether the detenu has made
any representation, to any person or authority, against his detention or not.
We are of the opinion that in Gracy's case (supra) it was not held that any
such duty was cast upon the Board but even if the observations are stretched to
that extent, we feel that those observations were uncalled for in view of the
scheme of the Act and the mandate of the Constitution.
In Nand Lal Bajaj v.
State of Punjab & Anr. [1981 (4) SCC 327] this Court made the following
observations: "The matter can be viewed from another angle. We were
informed that the Advisory Board did not forward the record of its proceedings
to the State Government. If that be so, then the procedure adopted was not in
consonance with the procedure established by law. The State Government while
confirming the detention order under Section 12 of the Act has not only to
peruse the report of the Advisory Board, but also to apply its mind to the
material on record. If the record itself was not before the State Government,
it follows that the order passed by the State Government under Section 12 of
the Act was without due application of mind. This is a serious infirmity in the
case which makes the continued detention of the detenu illegal."
from the fact that the period of detention is over, we also find that on merit,
the appellants have not made out any case for interference. The appeals are,