Updated: June 4, 2021 12:45:03 am
THREE ACCUSED in the Elgaar Parishad case have tested positive for Covid-19 at the Taloja Central Jail. After Father Stan Swamy — another accused in the case — was found infected with Covid-19, tests were conducted on the jail premises in which Mahesh Raut, Ramesh Gaichor and Sagar Gorkhe tested positive on Wednesday.
Swamy is currently admitted to private hospital Holy Family after directions from the Bombay High Court last week.
Officials said that 57 inmates were made to undergo RT-PCR and rapid antigen tests last week.
These included 10 accused in the Elgaar Parishad case, including Arun Ferreira, who had attended to Swamy to help the 84-year old in his daily chores. Ferreira, along with Vernon Gonsalves, Surendra Gadling, Anand Teltumbde, Gautam Navlakha, Rona Wilson and Sudhir Dhawale, tested negative.
Raut is a former Prime Minister Rural Development Fellow while Gorkhe and Gaichor are members of cultural group Kabir Kala Manch.
A source said the trio had been experiencing symptoms including fever, cough and loss of taste for over a week now and were tested four days ago.
A jail official said they have been shifted to a separate quarantine space within the prison.
The source said that the space is only 15×8 feet wide which they are sharing with another Covid patient, adding they have sought to be shifted to a more open space.
The source also claimed they have neither been given a special diet suitable for their condition nor medicines although their oxygen level was being checked by prison authorities.
Currently, there are 11 active cases of Covid-19 in Taloja Central Jail and 346 in the age group of 45 years and above have been vaccinated so far.
Earlier, Swamy and Delhi University associate professor Hany Babu had tested positive. Babu is also undergoing treatment at a hospital.
Poet Varavara Rao, 81, another accused in the case, had tested positive last year. He was released on bail on medical grounds this year in March.
Of the three women accused in the case and lodged in Byculla Women’s Prison — Jyoti Jagtap, Sudha Bharadwaj and Shoma Sen — Jagtap had tested positive for Covid-19 in April.
Taloja jail, which has an official capacity to house 2,124 prisoners, currently has 2,766 inmates.
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