‘Varavara Rao almost on deathbed’ Bombay HC orders to shift arrested poet to Nanavati Hospital

Taking note of the critical medical condition of the arrested poet Varavara Rao, the Bombay High Court on Wednesday directed that he be shifted to Nanavati Super Speciality Hospital from Taloja Jail, for 15 days for a thorough check-up, Live Law reported.

“Ultimately the man is on almost death bed. He needs some treatment. Can the State say no no we will treat him in Taloja?” Justice SS Shinde and Madhav Jamdar asked.
We are only saying transfer him to Nanavati for two weeks. We will further see after two weeks,” court said.

Senior lawyer Indira Jaisingh, appearing for Rao contested the Maharashtra government’s claims that he was “fully conscious and oriented”.

“He is completely bed ridden, in diapers… there is no medical attendant for him and his catheter was not changed for three months, due to which he has a urinary tract infection,” Jaisingh said.

Revolutionary poet 81-year-old Rao has been in jail for over 26 months in the Bhima Koregaon case. His bail pleas, including those filed for relief on the ground of his age, ill-health, and risk of Covid-19, have been rejected on multiple occasions.

At the first hearing of Rao’s wife Hemlatha’s plea, the High Court directed that a medical examination be conducted to gauge Rao’s health status.

Yesterday, Jaising, appearing for Hemlatha, described the one page medical report she had received as an “eyewash”.

Jaising had then argued that Rao’s medical condition was so poor that there was no chance of him escaping.

“He is bedridden. He is on diapers… Is this man going to run away from justice,” Jaisingh had asked.