Supreme Court: In the matter where the Court was hearing the petition against the order of the Punjab & Haryana High Court which directed the State of Gujarat to reconsider the application of premature release of the respondent who was convicted for offence committed under Section 3(3) of the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act, 1987 by the Designated Judge, Ahmedabad, it was held that the State of Gujarat is not the appropriate Government to consider the premature release of the convict as the offence was committed under the law made by the Parliament and not the State Legislature.

Considering the law laid down in G.V. Ramanaiah v. Superintendent of Central Jail, Rajahmundry, (1974) 3 SCC 531, the bench of Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh, JJ said that in the event of the conviction and sentence covered by the law made by the Parliament or the provisions of the Constitution even if the Legislature of the State is also empowered to make a law on the same subject and coextensive, the Appropriate Government will be the Union Government having regard to the prescription contained in the proviso to Article 73(1)(a) of the Constitution. Hence, the Court said that the High Court had erroneously opined that the State of Gujarat is the appropriate Government because it was guided by the principle that the respondent was convicted and sentenced in the State of Gujarat and had later sought transfer to the Central Prison, Punjab. It was further said that a Judge is expected to act in consonance and accord with the legal principles and he cannot assume the power on the basis of his individual perception or notion.

Hence, the Court, setting aside the order of the High Court, granted liberty to the respondent to submit a representation/application before the competent authority of the Union of India within a period of eight weeks and directed the authority to consider the same as expeditiously as possible in accordance with law and the guidelines framed for premature release. [State of Gujarat v. Lal Singh, 2016 SCC OnLine SC 633, decided on 29.06.2016]

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