The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the Centre and Jammu and Kashmir administration to inform by next week if it is releasing former chief minister Omar Abdullah, who has been detained since the abrogation of Article 370 in August last year.
A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and M R Shah told counsel appearing for the Centre that Abdullah's sister Sara Abdullah Pilot's plea against his detention will be heard on merit if he is not released soon.
"If you are releasing him, then release him soon or we will hear the matter on merits," the bench said.
The observations came after counsel for the Centre and the J-K administration informed the court that Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who was appearing in the matter, is arguing in another court.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the petitioner, said the court should fix a short date for hearing the matter.
To this the bench said only six benches are functioning due to the ongoing arrangement in the apex court and it does not know when the next turn will come.
"Probably next week we are sitting and the matter will be taken up at that time," the bench said.