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Bhim Army plea

Medical negligence finger at jail authorities
Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad protest the Citizenship (Amendment) Act at Jama Masjid in New Delhi on December 20, 2019.

PTI   |   New Delhi   |   Published 04.01.20, 11:30 PM

The Bhim Army claimed on Saturday that its jailed chief Chandrashekhar Azad was unwell and needed immediate medical care.

A senior jail official rejected the claim, saying Azad was “absolutely fine” and no such issue had come to notice during routine medical check-ups by the official jail doctor.

Delhi police had arrested Azad on December 21, a day after his outfit organised a march from the Jama Masjid to Jantar Mantar against the new citizenship law without permission from the police.

Azad’s personal doctor Harjeet Singh Bhatti claimed the Bhim Army chief suffers from a disease that requires biweekly phlebotomy, a “procedure to remove extra red blood cells from the blood to treat certain blood disorders”. 

Bhim Army spokesperson Kush Ambedkarwadi, who had met the jailed leader on Friday, said Azad has been undergoing treatment for the disease for the past one-and-a-half years and that he had told authorities at Tihar jail, where he is currently lodged, about it.

The last session of phlebotomy was scheduled a week ago. Azad has been complaining of headache, dizziness and pain in the abdomen, Bhatti claimed.

“If Azad doesn’t get immediate medical care, his blood might get thicker and he may suffer a cardiac arrest. The jail authorities are not allowing him to visit the AIIMS,” he said.

“This is inhuman and clear violation of human rights. I request Delhi Police and (home minister) Amit Shah to get him admitted to AIIMS,” he posted on Twitter.

The jail authorities, however, said Azad was “absolutely fine” and medical assistance would be provided to him if the need arose. 

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