The Supreme Court today stayed two orders of the Delhi High Court summoning Chief Secretary of Jammu and Kashmir in a matter related to grant of security cover to a Youth Congress leader. The Delhi High Court had summoned the chief secretary after counsel for the state failed to inform the court about the next date of meeting of the high-level Security Review Coordination Committee (SRCC). The SRCC comprises senior officials of the state and the Centre.
The panel assesses the threat perception and level of security cover required for the citizens including the VIPs. A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud stayed, the two orders of the high court dated January 3 and January 12, till March 12. It, however, clarified that its order of stay should not be construed as an expression of opinion on grant or non-grant of security cover to Abid Imitaz Bhat alias Abid Kashmiri, who is a national secretary of All India Youth Congress. Attorney General K K Venugopal and advocate Shoeb Alam appearing for Jammu and Kashmir said that the meeting of SRCC is scheduled to be held on Febaruary 19 to consider the security perception of Bhat. Alam raised the question of territorial jurisdicton and said that the Delhi High Court had no jurisdiction to hear the case as the matter was related to providing security in Jammu and Kashmir. He said the state government would not shy away from its duty to provide appropriate security cover to its citize of there was a threat perception determined by the SRCC. "At present, Bhat has been provisionally granted X-2 securty cover till the consideration of his case by the SRCC. Let the SRCC consider his case and suitably categorize his security requirement as per the existing policy," Alam said. The Jammu and Kashmir government had moved the apex court challenging the orders of high court summoning the chief secretary on Febaruary 13. It said the high court was not justified in directing the chief secretary to be personally present, when the prayer of granting security to Bhat had already been provisionally accepted. Bhat has sought direction from the high court seeking security for him and his family members from the state government on the ground that he has threat to his life.