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Romila Thapar, others write to Maharashtra govt, NIA urging immediate medical care for Varavara Rao

Romila Thapar. File.

Romila Thapar. File.  

Noted intellectuals, including historian Romila Thapar, appeal

Historian Romila Thappar and four eminent persons have appealed to the Maharashtra government and National Investigation Agency (NIA) to ensure that Telugu poet and writer P. Varavara Rao, who is lodged in Navi Mumbai’s Taloja jail in connection with the the Elgar Parishad case, gets immediate medical care. “To knowingly risk the life of a person in state custody by refusing proper medical treatment would amount to “encounter”, they said in a statement.

Also read | Poet Varavara Rao seeks bail

Mr. Rao, 81, has been behind bars since 2018. His family has claimed that the poet is in critical condition and needs treatment. In a petition signed by Ms. Thapar, economist Prabhat Patnaik and Devaki Jain, sociologist Satish Deshpande and human rights activist Maja Daruwala, said that Mr. Rao is suffering from low levels of sodium and potassium as diagnosed by the J.J. Hospital, Mumbai, where his treatment was abruptly terminated and he was taken back to jail. It is a life threatening situation at his age.

“Mr. Rao poses no flight risk and has voluntarily submitted to all investigations for the past 22 months. There is no reason in law or conscience to hold him in circumstances that increase risk to his fragile health,” they said in a statement.

The authorities, the petitioners said, need to assure the nation that the Indian State respects the rule of law and the Constitution, by ensuring proper treatment for Mr. Rao.

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Printable version | Aug 4, 2020 5:54:36 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/romila-thapar-others-write-to-maharashtra-govt-nia-urging-immediate-medical-care-for-varavara-rao/article32059772.ece

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