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Varavara Rao discharged from Nanavati Hospital, returns to Taloja jail

By Vijay Kumar Yadav, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON AUG 28, 2020 12:33 AM IST

Telugu poet P Varavara Rao, 81, one of the accused arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in the Elgar Parishad case, was discharged from Nanavati Hospital on Thursday afternoon. Rao was admitted there on July 19 after he tested positive for Covid-19. He has been taken back to Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai, where he was earlier lodged.

Deepak Pandey, inspector general (south region prisons) has confirmed the development.

Rao was first taken to Sir JJ Hospital on May 28 after he fell unconscious, but was discharged on June 1. His family had alleged the 81-year-old was discharged hurriedly to obstruct his bail plea. “He was not normal at the time of discharge. June 2 was the date of the hearing on his bail application on health grounds in NIA special sessions court, and police argued against his bail showing [a] hospital ‘normal’ report. The judge accepted that and refused bail on June 26,” read a statement from Rao’s family.

Later, Rao continued to show signs of delirium, and after voices were raised from various quarters, he was admitted to Sir JJ Hospital again on July 13. After he tested positive for Covid-19 infection, he was shifted to St George Hospital.

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) also intervened and issued notices to the Maharashtra government to ensure the health conditions of Rao were taken care of and adequate medical facilities were arranged.

The commission had also directed the state to constitute a medical board to examine Rao’s health condition. NHRC asked the state to provide Rao the best possible treatment at a private hospital and also to ensure that to bear all the medical expenditures. He was then shifted to Nanavati Hospital for treatment.

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