Denial of medical bail is gross injustice: Friends of Sudha Bharadwaj

Peers of Sudha Bharadwaj expressed outrage in a letter at the attempt of jail authorities to hide facts of her health condition.


Friends and family of trade unionist Sudha Bharadwaj allege jail authorities’ tampering of medical reports in an open letter, following Bombay High Court’s denial of Bharadwaj’s medical bail on Friday August 28.

Calling her latest medical report “misleading,” the letter said, “This dismissal of bail based on fallacious [sic] medical report is extremely disappointing to friends and family of Sudha Bharadwaj, who have been very concerned about her deteriorating health condition.”

In support of the dissidents presently in jail, over 70 organizations have issued a National Call for a week of protest from August 28, to demand the release of those arrested in the Bhima Koregaon case as well as the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) protestors, journalists and to ask for the repeal of draconian acts like Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA.)

On June 11, Sudha Bharadwaj moved the Bombay High Court for a medical bail. As per her application, the sexagenarian suffers from diabetes, hypertension, and has a history of pulmonary tuberculosis, making her vulnerable to a Covid-19 infection. The application also said she suffers from a variation of arthritis that makes movement difficult.

In response, the Byculla Women’s jail authorities submitted a medical report on July 21 that confirmed the same. The report also showed that her aggravated hypertension put her at risk of a heart attack.  This was reiterated in a second medical report submitted on August 3 which has caused great concern to her family and friends. However, the third medical report on August 21 did not take note either of her heart condition or of her arthritis which it dismissed as “body ache.”

Daughter Maaysha Bharadwaj said the decision of the Division Bench is a travesty of justice. She said it is ironic that her mother who spent her lifetime helping the marginalized communities and upholding Constitutional rights is denied the basic right to bail, while those convicted of murder enjoy relaxed parole rules.

Like Bharadwaj, there are 12 well-known intellectuals, professors, writers etc in jail in connection with this case. 


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