A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud on Friday appreciated the importance of the issue raised by the state government’s counsel Rajeev Dhavan, who questioned the correctness of the HC’s decision to step into what was in the exclusive domain of the executive.
The bench asked additional solicitor general Pinky Anand to inform the AG about the court’s desire for his assistance in the matter on Monday.
The PDP-BJP coalition government through counsel Shoeb Alam challenged the HC’s February 17 decision refusing to modify its Mrach 14, 2016 order directing the state to provide up to four security guards along with a personal security officer (PSO) to former chief justices andretired judges of the HC.
The state government said, “Throughout the country, Security Cover for VIPs and protected persons is provided on the basis of threat assessment carried out as per the guidelines laid down by the ministry of home affairs, a compilation of which is referred to as ‘yellow book’.” It said determining the level of security and arrangements for protected persons was a decision to be taken by experts and not the judiciary.
“As such, the field is occupied by a detailed policy which contains the procedure for periodic assessment of threats, providing security on the basis of such assessment.
It is, therefore, not a subject that is unguided by any executive expert policy for the HC to step in and issue directions,” it said.
The Mehbooba government said it was not a case where the HC found fault with the Existing Security arrangements for HC judges, top law officers, district judges or judicial officers. “The HC has not made any remark on insufficiency of existing security cover for judges or judicial officers and that such deficiency compromised judicial functions,” it said.
“Despite not having concluded adversely against the existing security set up, the HC on the basis of conjecture and surmises has passed an illegal direction to provide security cover to the above dignitaries,” it added.
Source : timesofindia