Decided on September 19,1988

Babansing Biharilal Bhaiya Appellant
The Commissioner Of Police Respondents


RAVANI,J. - (1.)The petitioner has been detained under the provisions of the Gujarat Prevention of Anti Social Activities Act, 1985 ('PASA' for short) as per order dated January 21, 1988 passed by Commissioner of Police, Surat. In the grounds of detention furnished to the detenu it was alleged against the petitioner that has was a bootlegger and was engaged in following activities :
(1) That is the Udhna Police Station area, in 'Khatrinagar Jhupadpatti' locality and near his house and near Udhna Golghanti and Udhna Bhimnagar area he was running three different dens of country liquor and was selling country liquor at these places. At these places of dens different persons gathered together for drinking liquor, and the dens remained open from morning till late in the night :

(2) For running these dens he was importing country liquor from outside and was keeping the same in his possession, and for carrying on these activities he had no licence;

(3) That during the years 1986 and 1987 he was involved in fifteen Prohibition cases which took place in Udhna Golghanti and Udhna Bhimnagar and 'Khatrinagar Jhupadpatti' areas. That all these cases were pending in court and that he was arrested from different places;

(4) That he remained continuously busy for all time in illegal liquor business;

(5) That he threatened the persons who came in the way of his business to beat, and as a matter of fact had beaten certain persons and on account of this the peoples residing in the locality got frightened and they ran halter skelter; and

(6) That on December 5, 1986 one person named Daudbhai Adam Bhai was passing through the liquor den situated in Golghanti. At that time many poor workmen had gathered there for drinking liquor. Thereupon said Daudbhai told the petitioner that he was robbing these poor people by getting them addicted to drink the liquor. Thereupon the petitioner had got angry and beaten Daudbhai with stick. On account of this incident the atmosphere in the locality was disturbed and the people had run away and even there was traffic jam. The aforesaid incident was seen by Mohmad Sabir Gulam Rasool as he also happened to pass through that place at that time.

(7) That on December 18, 1987 at about 9.00 p.m. when Zariff Abdullabhai passed through the liquor den situated in Bhim Nagar area the petitioner asked him to lift a liquor 'tin' as it was pointed out by the petitioner's servant. Zariff Abdullabhai refused to do the same and therefore the petitioner had beaten him and had given him fist blows. On account of this public order in the locality was disturbed and there was panic. The aforesaid incident was seen by Kazar Abdul Majid.

(2.)Fifteen prohibition cases which have been registered against the petitioner-detenu have also been mentioned in the grounds of detention. These offences are of the period between March 31, 1986 and June 7, 1987. In each of the cases large quantity of liquor has been seized. In each of the case place of offence is near the liquor dens of the detenu. In two cases 100 litres of liquor was seized and in one case 120 liters of liquor was seized. In other cases the quantity of liquor seized varied from 10 to 50 litres. It may be noted that in all there were fifteen such cases. In view of the aforesaid activities of the petitioner-detenu the detaining authority was satisfied that the petitioner was a bootlegger as defined under the provisions of PASA and his activity was adversely affecting the maintenance of public order, and with a view to preventing him from acting in that manner it was necessary to detain him. Hence the order of detention as mentioned hereinabove.
(3.)It may be realised that the detention is made with an object to prevent the petitioner from acting as bootlegger and preventing him from acting in any manner adversely affecting public order. However, the object cannot be equated with the grounds of detention. The grounds of detention under Article 22(5) of the Constitution mean factual inferences as well as the factual material which led to such factual inferences. In the case of State of Gujarat v. Chamanlal Manjibhai Soni, AIR 1981 SC 1480 , this aspect has been elaborately stated by the Supreme Court in the following words :
"It would, therefore, be correct to say that the object of the Act constitutes the ground for detention.... What the Act provided is that where there are a number of grounds of detention covering various activities of the detenu spreading over a period or periods each activity is a separate ground, by itself and if one of the grounds irrelevant, vague, or unspecific then these will vitiate the order of detention."
The aforesaid view is reiterated by the Supreme Court in the case of Prakash Chandra Mehta v. Commissioner and Secretary, Government of Kerala & others, AIR 1986 SC 687 . In para 75 of the judgment the aforesaid decision of the Supreme Court be in terms been referred to and the principles laid down therein have been reiterated.

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