No Relief for Varavara Rao as Bombay High Court Defers His Bail Plea

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His lawyer Indira Jaising sought his immediate transfer to Nanavati Hospital – which is a super speciality hospital with the means to treat his conditions – and eventually for bail on grounds of his health

Clarion India

MUMBAI – The Bombay High Court on Thursday refused to provide immediate relief to 80-year-old poet and activist Varavara Rao, whose family had sought the court’s intervention on the grounds of his deteriorating health. Rao, currently lodged in the same Taloja jail from which Arnab Goswami was earlier set free by the Supreme Court, was arrested in 2018 and in recent months his health has taken a dramatic turn for the worse.

His lawyer Indira Jaising sought his immediate transfer to Nanavati Hospital – which is a super speciality hospital with the means to treat his conditions – and eventually for bail on grounds of his health. Jaising argued that Rao is completely bed ridden and having to use a urine bag, and there is no danger whatsoever that he can attempt to flee from justice. Presently he is not even fit enough to face trial, she added.

The Bombay HC has asked for a panel of doctors from Nanavati hospital to assess his condition through video call, and poster the matter to be heard next on Tuesday.

Earlier this year he had contracted covid and his family and fellow prisoners had raised alarm regarding his condition and treatment at the jail hospital. The current petition also came about after another octogenarian activist prisoner in Taloja jail, Father Stan Swamy, told his lawyers about Rao’s worsening condition. Incidentally, 83 year old Father Stan Swamy, who is the oldest person in India to be charged under UAPA, is suffering from Parkisnon’s disease and had earlier this week moved an application before the special court asking for a straw and sipper to be able to drink water. His application is pending.

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Clarion India - News, Views and Insights about Indian Muslims, Dalits, Minorities, Women and Other Marginalised and Dispossessed Communities.

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