Externment Orders and Personal Liberty: Analyzing the Implications  

Sunil Kumar vs The State Of Karnataka

23 May, 2023

Bench: Hon’ble Krishna S.Dixit



In the Indian legal system, externment orders hold significant implications for personal liberty, as they restrict individuals from residing within a specific area. This blog examines a specific case, Sunil Kumar v. The State of Karnataka, where the petitioner challenges an externment order issued against him. The blog delves into the arguments presented, the court’s decision, and the broader impact of such orders on individual rights, particularly in relation to Article 21 of the Constitution of India.

Background of the Case:

The petitioner, Sunil Kumar, filed a writ petition under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India, seeking to quash the externment order issued against him. The impugned order was dated 07.03.2023 and bore number MAG (EXILE) VIVA.500/2021-22. The petitioner challenged the order on the grounds that it did not reflect a due application of mind and infringed upon his constitutionally guaranteed personal liberty under Article 21.


Article Content
21 No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law
226 Gives High Courts the ability to issue instructions, orders, and writs to any person or authority, including the government
227 Gives High Courts the power of superintendence over all courts and tribunals in the territory over which they have jurisdiction.

Arguments Presented:

The counsel representing the petitioner argued that externment orders cannot be issued in a routine manner, as they have significant implications for personal liberty. They contended that the order in question lacked a proper examination of the material on record and should be invalidated.


The learned Additional Government Advocate (AGA), representing the respondents, opposed the writ petition. The AGA argued that the externment order was justified as the petitioner had a history of being a habitual gambler and had failed to exhibit good conduct even after being provided with Good Conduct Bonds. The AGA further contended that the writ court should not grant any indulgence in such matters.

Court’s Decision and Analysis:

After considering the arguments presented, the court disposed of the writ petition with a stipulation. The court acknowledged the significance of externment orders on personal liberty and recognized that the impugned order should not be enforced immediately if the petitioner executes a Good Conduct Bond within a period of two weeks. However, the court emphasized that failure to execute the bond would render the order enforceable. Additionally, if the petitioner breaches the bond, the bond amount would be forfeited to the State Exchequer.

Implications and Significance:

The court’s decision in this case highlights the balance between personal liberty and the need to maintain law and order. Externment orders are viewed as measures to prevent potential disruptions caused by habitual offenders, but their impact on individual rights must be carefully evaluated. The court’s stipulation regarding the Good Conduct Bond reflects a compromise that allows the petitioner an opportunity to demonstrate good behavior while ensuring that the order remains enforceable in case of any breach.



The case of Sunil Kumar v. The State of Karnataka sheds light on the intricacies surrounding externment orders and their implications for personal liberty. While recognizing the importance of maintaining public order, it is crucial for authorities to exercise due diligence and ensure a fair examination of the material on record before issuing such orders. This case serves as a reminder that individual rights, particularly the right to personal liberty enshrined in Article 21 of the Constitution, should be protected and upheld while maintaining the rule of law.

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