R.K. Varma, J.
1. This is a petition under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution. By this petition, the petitioner has challenged the order of externment of the petitioner passed by the District Magistrate of District Dhar passed on 16-4-1984 Annexure H to the petition and the appellate order passed by the State Government Home Department on 4-8-1984 dismissing the petitioner's appeal on merits.
2. The action under the Madhya Pradesh Rajya Suraksha Tatha Lok Vyavastha Adhiniyam, 1980 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Adhiniyam') was taken on the application by the Superintendent of Police, District Dhar against the petitioner and three eithers, viz., Vijay Kumar, Badri and Chhotu on the allegation that having regard to the difficulties created in maintenance of peace and security in public as a result of antisocial activities of the petitioner, the action of externment of the petitioner and other three members from district Dhar and nearby District was called for. Along with the application of the Superintendent of Police, the list of witnesses and the list of documents were also submitted. The petitioner and the other three members, named above, were given notices under Section 15 of the Adhiniyam on 3rd July, 1982 to show cause as to why the action be not taken against them under the said Adhiniyam. Chhotu submitted his reply to the show-cause notice. It was pointed out that the notice did not mention the relevant provisions. Hence again show-cause notices, under Section 15 of the Adhiniyam, were given to the petitioner and others afresh. In the show-cause notice dt. 23-2-1983 issued to the petitioner, he was informed of the general nature of the material allegations against him and was given an opportunity of tendering an explanation regarding them. On the basis of the allegations contained in the notice, the petitioner was required to show-cause as to why action under Section 11,12, or 13 of the Adhiniyam be not taken against him for his removal from the district of Dhar and neighbouring districts for a period of one year under Section 14 of the Adhiniyam. The general nature of the material allegations against the petitioner as required to be informed in writing by the District Magistrate under Section 15(1) of the Adhiniyam in the show-cause notice included the allegations that the petitioner was a leader of a 'gang' in Dhar town and as a member of the 'gang' had been terrorising the general public of Dhar town by his criminal activities for a long time, that being a dangerous person, drunk and armed with dangerous weapons he was off and on, assaulting, threatening causing harm and communal riots and even doing 'Mar-peet' with police-man on duty, that as a member of the 'gang' he did 'Mar-peet' and caused injuries to the people after forcing entry in their houses. It was also stated in the show-cause notice that on account of criminal activities of the petitioner, the general public of Dhar town was so much terrorized, that they were afraid of lodging report with police and did not take courage to give evidence against him in Court and complainants out of fear entered into compromise in Court. It was stated that criminal cases had been instituted against the petitioner and several cases were pending, in the Court still. It was further stated that having regard to available facts and existing circumstances, the District Magistrate was satisfied that a feeling of alarm and danger had prevailed in the general public of Dhar town because of the movements and acts of the petitioner and breach of law and order was apprehended at any time.
3. The petitioner and other members submitted replies to the respective show-cause notices denying the allegations and seeking opportunity to adduce evidence. The petitioner and others were allowed the opportunity to examine witnesses. In support of the allegations, the police also produced documentary proof and examined witnesses. It may be mentioned that no grievance has been made by the petitioner about the adequacy of opportunity being afforded to him to show cause against the proposed action of externment. The petitioner, however, remained absent during the proceedings since he had absconded and had allegedly disappeared with a girl according to the police.
4. The District Magistrate after considering the entire material and the evidence on record came to the conclusion that no case for the proposed action of externment was made out so far as the other members Vijay, Badri and Chhotu were concerned. As regards the petitioner, the District Magistrate found that all the witnesses examined by the Police had proved the allegations principally against the petitioner as regards his anti-social and criminal activities including participation in loot, Marpeet, communal riots and misbehaviour with ladies. The District Magistrate had inter alia also considered the prosecution of the petitioner under Section 395/397 of the Penal Code for crime No. 64/81 on the alleged facts that he had on 1-2-1981 along with 10 to 15 miscreants being armed with weapons had attacked the complainant Abdul Subhan with a sword and looted Rs. 150/- from him. In para 9 of the order, the District Magistrate came to the conclusion that the petitioner committed several criminal acts including misbehaviour with the ladies, doing Mar-peet with people without rhyme or reason, moving with weapons and thus causing danger of impediment to the police in maintenance of public peace and order. The petitioner was arrested under Section 151 Cr. P.C. several times and several criminal cases are pending against him in the Courts, Even after knowing these facts, the petitioner's criminal activities have not abated and as informed by the police, the petitioner had abducted a girl and was not traceable. The anti-social and criminal activities of the petitioner had affected the even tempo of life of all sections of the society in the locality and the police found it difficult to maintain public peace and order. The District Magistrate, therefore, ordered the petitioner to be removed from district Dhar and other neighbouring districts Jhabua, Khargone, Indore, Ujjain and Ratlam for a period of one year.
5. The petitioner filed an appeal to the State Government in the Home Department, apparently under Section 16 of the Adhiniyam but the same was dismissed on merits by order of the State Government dated 4-8-1984. The appellate authority after considering the evidence of the witnesses came to the conclusion that the statements of the prosecution witnesses disclose the conduct and movements of the petitioner to be clearly anti-social and his criminal acts hold the general public in constant fear of insecurity and breach of public peace. The acquittal of the petitioner in a criminal case did not belie his constant criminal activities. The appellate authority, therefore, held that the order of the district Magistrate directing externment of the petitioner for one year, was proper.
6. Learned Counsel for the petitioner has contended that having regard to the provisions of Sections 11, 12 and 13 of the Adhiniyam together, the petitioner's externment may be justified but since the order of the District Magistrate discloses that the petitioner was sought to be proceeded against on an application of the police under Section 11 of the Adhiniyam this case ought to have been considered with reference to Section 11 of the Adhiniyam alone and the petitioner along with other persons having not been held to be a gang or body of persons as is contemplated in Section 11 of the Adhiniyam, the impugned order of the District Magistrate as well as the appellate order directing externment of the petitioner were bad in law and deserve to be quashed. This contention of the learned Counsel has no substance as the show-cause notice dt. 23rd Feb. 1983 (Annexure-'b') informed the petitioner that it was proposed to proceed against him under Sections 11, 12 and 13 of the Adhiniyam. The antisocial and criminal activities of the petitioner apparently fall under Section 12(a) of the Adhiniyam according to which whenever it appears to the District Magistrate that the movements or acts of any person are causing or calculated to cause alarm, danger or harm to person or property, the District Magistrate may by an order in writing duly served on him, direct such person to remove himself out-side the district or districts contiguous thereto.
7. The learned Counsel for the petitioner next contended that the material placed before the District Magistrate also included incidents of the period of 1978 to 1981 and also some cases which ended in acquittal. It is the contention of the learned Counsel that if the old material and the cases of acquittal were excluded from consideration it could well be that the District Magistrate would not have taken a decision to extern the petitioner and as such the impugned order was invalid being based on material including irrelevant material. In this connection learned Counsel cited a decisions of the Supreme Court in Smt. Bimla Dewan v. The Lieutenant Governor of Delhi : 1982CriLJ1737 which is a case under National Security Act for the authority that the detention based on consideration of such instances of criminal prosecution, as ended in acquittal, is invalid This authority would not be applicable in the circumstances of the present case since neither the show-cause notice nor the impugned orders disclose that the order of externment has been made on the basis of criminal prosecution ending in acquittals.
The District Magistrate has considered the evidence adduced before him by the witnesses and on an overall appreciation of the material, he came to the conclusion that the petitioner was an anti-social person whose movements or acts were causing the alarm and danger to the general public and disturbing the even tempo of life in the town. Moreover, the National Security Act, 1980 has since been amended by the amending ordinance No. 6 of 1984 dt. 21st June, 1984 whereby Section 5A of the National Security Act has been introduced in that Act making a provision that the order of detention under Section 3 of the National Security Act shall not be deemed to be invalid or inoperative merely because one or some of the grounds is or are vague, non-existent, not relevant, not connected or not approximately connected with such person, or invalid for any other reason whatsoever. Thus, this second argument of the learned Counsel for the petitioner is also found to be having no force and has to be rejected.
8. Learned Counsel further contended that the incidents and the instances considered by the District Magistrate relate to the problem of law and order and not public order. To bring out the distinction, learned Counsel relied on the observations made in Arun Ghosh v. State of West Bengal : 1970CriLJ1136 which are reproduced in para 7 of the decision in Smt. Bimla Dewan's case 1982 Cri LJ 1737 (supra):
Take the case of assault on girls. A guest at a hotel may kiss or make advances to half a dozen chamber maids. He may annoy them and also the management but he does not cause disturbance of public order. He may even have a fracas with the friends of one of the girls but even then it would be a case of breach of law and order only. Take another case of a man who molests women in lonely places. As a result of his activities girls going to colleges and schools are in constant danger and fear. Women going for their ordinary business are afraid of being waylaid and assaulted. The activity of this man in its essential quality is not different from the act of the other man but in its potentiality and in its effect upon the public tranquillity there is a vast difference. The act of the man who molests the girls in lonely places causes a disturbance in the even tempo of living which is the first requirement of public order. He disturbs the society and the community. His act makes all the women apprehensive of their honour and he can be said to be causing disturbance of public order and not merely committing individual actions which may be taken note of by the criminal prosecution agencies.
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9. The extent and magnitude of the activities of the petitioner in the present case, as viewed by the District Magistrate, has the potentiality and effect of causing a disturbance in the even tempo of living and, therefore, it cannot be said that the instant case relates to the simple problem of law and order merely.
10. Learned Counsel for the petitioners lastly submitted that the District Magistrate has directed that the order of externment would be operative for full one year which is the maximum period permissible under Section 14 of the Adhiniyam. In doing so the District Magistrate has apparently not used his discretion and passed the order mechanically. From the reading of the impugned order as a whole, we do not find non-application of mind and as such the period of externment as ordered by the District Magistrate in his discretion does not render the order unlawful. As regards the adequacy of duration of externment, the appellate authority alone could have modified the same. No interference can, however, be made in this writ jurisdiction.
11. As a result of the discussion aforesaid, in our opinion, no case has been made out to justify interference with the impugned order in exercise of this Court's jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution.
12. Consequently this petition fails and is dismissed.