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Varun plea on detention
Published on 2 Apr. 2009 12:25 AM IST
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Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Varun Gandhi Wednesday moved the Supreme Court against his detention under the National Security Act (NSA) for his alleged hate speeches, shortly after he was shifted to the Etah jail from his Uttar Pradesh constituency Pilibhit amid protests by his supporters. As Varun Gandhi was taken from the Pilibhit jail to Etah, 300 km away, in the dark hours preceding dawn, he was again the much discussed topic of the day. As BJP and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) workers clamoured for his release outside the Etah jail, mother Maneka Gandhi called the shifting a political conspiracy while party president Rajnath Singh reiterated the BJP’s support to him in Raipur. The establishment in Lucknow stressed it was necessitated by security concerns. Appearing for him, former additional solicitor general Mukul Rohatgi told a bench of Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan that his client has been illegally put in preventive detention under the National Security Act (NSA), 1980, through misuse of the provision of the law. Rohatgi told the bench, which also included Justice P. Sathasivam and Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly, that he was in the process of filing a habeas corpus petition for production of his client before the court and pleaded to the bench to accord it an urgent hearing. The bench assured him of an urgent hearing Thursday. In his lawsuit, filed later in the apex court’s registry, Gandhi termed his detention order, passed by the Pilibhit district magistrate March 29, as “bad in law” and issued with the motive of political vendetta to foil his electoral debut. “The detention order and the ground supplied are bad in law and have been passed with political motivation,” said Gandhi in his petition. In his petition, Gandhi said: “My detention by the state government is to ensure that I am not able to contest and campaign for the general elections scheduled next month.” Dreaded gangster Chhota Shakeel had ordered the elimination of Varun Gandhi the day he was to surrender at a Pilibhit court, according to the Intelligence Bureau which intercepted a telephonic communication on March 21 from the Karachi-based don for this ‘special assignment’ to his key shooter Rashid Malbari. The IB had alerted the UP home department on March 22, after which Varun’s ‘on-way’ security was doubled. Malbari, alias Double, was arrested in a joint operation of the IB and Karnataka’s Department of Criminal Intelligence Bureau in Mangalore on March 27 while he was preparing to move to Pilibhit via Delhi.

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