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Elgaar Parishad case: Taloja jail equipped to treat Varavara, NIA tells HC

A division bench of Justice S S Shinde and Justice Manish Pitale was hearing a plea filed by Rao’s wife Pendyala Hemalatha, seeking his release on bail from the Taloja Central Jail in Navi Mumbai on health grounds.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
January 21, 2021 1:55:27 am
Elgaar Parishad Case, Varavara RaoPoet-activist Varavara Rao. (File)

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Maharashtra prison authorities Wednesday assured the Bombay High Court that facilities to protect prisoners from various ailments and diseases have improved and hence, there was no harm in shifting Elgaar Parishad case accused Varavara Rao to the Taloja jail hospital from Nanavati hospital in Mumbai.

A division bench of Justice S S Shinde and Justice Manish Pitale was hearing a plea filed by Rao’s wife Pendyala Hemalatha, seeking his release on bail from the Taloja Central Jail in Navi Mumbai on health grounds.

Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, representing the NIA, told the HC: “As far as jail conditions are concerned, the authorities are abiding by the earlier judgment of the High Court on a group of petitions filed during the lockdown, where detailed guidelines for jail administrations were issued… and the state has made all improvements as per the directions.”

Singh added that in light of this, the Taloja jail hospital was equipped to monitor Rao’s health and treat him, he added.

However, senior counsel Anand Grover, appearing for Hemalatha, submitted that the Taloja jail hospital was not equipped, as laboratory technicians were not available.

Seeking at least a three-month temporary medical bail for Rao, Grover said that in the meantime, he can report to NIA whenever called. Following this, the HC directed Grover to file a affidavit on facilities that are not available at the Taloja hospital jail.

The HC will continue hearing the plea on Thursday.

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