Delhi University Professor G N Saibaba, who was released on bail Thursday, said he had not received any medical treatment during his incarceration in Nagpur Central Prison. The wheelchair-bound professor, arrested for alleged Maoist links, was granted bail earlier this week by the Supreme Court.
Talking to The Indian Express, Saibaba said, “I have lived and breathed democratic struggle all my life. I will continue it in whatever way I can but my health has deteriorated in the last three months. I was not given any medical treatment and had to suffer in bed. They didn’t allow me to meet my lawyer or my wife.”
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“My top priority is to improve my health, which has deteriorated further during my latest stay in the Anda cell, where I was treated worse than when I was there earlier,” he said.
It may take several months for him to recover, said Saibaba, adding that he would eventually “go back to teaching”.
On the row over the sedition law, the DU professor said, “The sedition law is draconian and the judiciary has stopped taking it on face value. I have full faith that it will be annulled soon.”
Sedition charges were also slapped on some JNU students recently, after “anti-national” slogans were allegedly raised during an event on campus, triggering a political storm. However, Saibaba said such slogans didn’t “carry any importance.” “The so-called slogans may have been raised by some fringe students and not the organisers… what is the use of such slogans,” he said.
On whether he was going to extend his support to JNU students, Saibaba said, “If they invite me, I will certainly meet them. I stay just across the campus and have been attending programmes organised by the students for over 25 years.”
He said allegations about event organisers having Maoist links were “similar to what is happening in Chhattisgarh”. On the trial going on in Gadchiroli court, Saibaba said, “I am hopeful that justice will be done”.