Out on bail,ailing Chautalas flourish in Gurgaon hospital

Ajay was given bail for four weeks on August 12 also for cardiac problems.

Written by Varinder Bhatia | Chandigarh | Published:August 27, 2013 2:24 am

If the Chautalas can’t go to their partymen,the partymen can come to them. As Om Prakash Chautala and his son Ajay,convicts in the Junior Basic Training (JBT) teachers’ scam,remain confined to their hospital beds in Gurgaon’s Medanta Hospital,leaders of the INLD and other parties have been dropping by. The first for “advice” on the coming elections,the second for apparently casual visits.

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The count for Chautala Senior alone is close to a hundred visitors since he was granted bail for six weeks in May for undergoing heart surgery. Ajay was given bail for four weeks on August 12 — also for cardiac problems.

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While allowing them bail,the Delhi High Court bench of Justice Siddharth Mridul had,in two separate orders,told them not to leave the National Capital Region without permission. They were told to deposit their passports so that they wouldn’t leave the country.

The court said nothing about people meeting the two,though. And on an average,they get 30-40 visitors daily,most of them partymen and staunch followers.

“Whatever strategies are adopted by the party,those are first discussed with Chaudhary Om Prakash Chautala,since he is our party chief. There is no bar on us to do that. We keep meeting him regularly to discuss all future campaigns. We have already discussed the strategy and issues for the Haryana Vidhan Sabha session scheduled for September 6,” INLD state president Ashok Arora said.

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Dr A K Dubey,MS,Medanta Hospital,said,“There is no relaxation in hospital rules and regulations for Om Prakash Chautala. Though there are a large number of people who keep waiting for him in the hospital lobby,all those who visit

him in his room do so during the routine visiting hours only. Visiting hours have not been relaxed for him.”

The Chautalas had been convicted along with 53 others in the scam involving recruitment of junior basic teachers under the INLD-led government in Haryana.

In its bail order,the high court had given Ajay a 24-hour deadline to get himself admitted in hospital. He managed to fit in a visit to a temple and a gurdwara,followed by a detour to his residence in Delhi,in that time. Yoga guru Baba Ramdev,who had already met Chautala Sr in Medanta Hospital twice,was waiting for Ajay at his residence. The next day,Ajay too got admitted in Medanta.

Among Om Prakash Chautala’s first visitors were leaders from former ally BJP,leading many to wonder about new friendships. He has since met senior BJP leaders Rajnath Singh,Murli Manohar Joshi and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi as well as former Army chief General (retd) V K Singh,Congress detractor Rao Inderjit Singh,Shiromani Akali Dal leaders Sukhbir Badal and Bikramjit Singh Majithia,among others.

The elder Chautala’s fate shall be decided on August 31,when a board of doctors will submit a fresh report on his health,as directed by the court. The board comprises a doctor from Tihar Jail and a specialist each from AIIMS,and Delhi’s Ram Manohar Lohia and G B Pant Hospitals. A decision will then be taken over whether Chautala should be allowed to stay out of jail due to age-related problems,or be sent back.

Ajay has been advised by doctors to either undergo a pacemaker implant surgery or adopt other procedures for treatment of his cardiac ailment. That may keep him out of jail for longer than his bail period.

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