[dropcap]T[/dropcap]HE Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to examine in January next year the constitutional validity of a section in the passport law that provides for the issuance of a passport for only one year to an accused person on receipt of a ‘no objection certificate’ (NOC) from a court.
A two-judge bench comprising of Justices Deepak Gupta and Aniruddha Bose directed the matter to be listed on a non-miscellaneous day in the third week of January 2020.
The court was hearing a petition filed by advocate Prashant Bhushan who got a passport for a period of only one year on account of some FIRs registered against him for allegedly taking part in protest demonstrations.
In his plea, Bhushan has contended that “the blanket prohibition in Section 6(2)(f) has been partially lifted vide a notification issued in 1993 which states that passport may be issued/reissued if the applicant produces a NOC from the court concerned and if no period is mentioned in the NOC, then the passport shall be issued/reissued for only one year”.
He has also challenged the 1993 notification of the Ministry of External Affairs on the issuance of passport during the pendency of a criminal case.
Bhushan has filed this appeal challenging the Delhi High Court challenging order which had dismissed his plea earlier.