G.P. Singh, C.J.
1. By this petition under Article 226 of the Constitution, the petitioner seeks issuance of a writ of habeas corpus for quashing of the order dated 14th October, 1982 passed by the District Magistrate, Bhopal, ordering detention of Sunderlal Kachhi under Section 3, National Security Act, 1980.
2. The detention of Sunderlal Kachhi has been ordered with a view to prevent him from acting in any manner prejudicial to the maintenance of public order. The grounds of detention were served on him on 18th October, 1982. A perusal of grounds (a) and (b) in para 2 will show that they are simple acts of assault. One of the incidents took place on 14th July 1981 at 12.30 in the night and the other incident took place on 14th May 1982 at 7.30 p.m. It is not stated in the grounds how these incidents of assault disturbed the even tempo of the life of the community. It appears that the detenu was externed from Bhopal and adjoining districts by an order dated 10th March, 1982 passed under the M. P. Rajya Suraksha Tatha Lok Vyawastha Adhiniyam, 1980. This order was served on the detenu on 21st May 1982. Thereafter it is said that the detenu was found on 25th May 1982 in Bhopal and a case under Section 21 of the said Adhiniyam was registered against him. We enquired from the learned Deputy Advocate General as to why a challan was not immediately filed and action was not taken to have the detenu convicted by the ordinary criminal court. The reply that we got was that the challan was filed nearly after two months and the detenu had, therefore, to be released on bail. A case under Section 21 of the Adhiniyam when the detenu was arrested on 25th May, 1982 after he had been served with the order of externment on 21st May, 1982 should not have taken more than twenty-four hours for investigation and presentation of a charge-sheet. Had that been done and had these allegations been true, the detenu could have been convicted and sentenced and no action would have been necessary under the National Security Act.
3. Some further incidents in which the detenu Was involved and which took place on 3rd October, 1982 and 12th October, 1982 are stated in the grounds of detention in para 2(g), (h) and (i). It is specifically mentioned that the detenu created an atmosphere of panic during that period, amongst the people in the locality. Such an allegation is absent in respect of other incidents which shows that other incidents did not affect the even tempo of life of the community. The distinction between law and order and public order is now well established. We may in this context refer to our decision in Misc. Petition No. 899 of 1981, Vinod Kumar Pandey v. Dist. Magistrate, Satna, decided on 19th September, 1981, Considered in the light of that distinction, the aforesaid incidents, in respect of which there is no allegation that there was any panic created in the people of the locality or disturbance of the even tempo of life of the community, cannot be held to relate to public order. It is now well settled that even one irrelevant ground is sufficient to vitiate an order of detention.
4. The petition is allowed. The detention order is set aside. The detenu Sunderlal Kachhi be released forthwith.