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Human Rights Activist Varavara Rao moved to Mumbai's JJ Hospital

This comes after several activists along with Rao’s family members held an urgent presser on Sunday to inform about his deteriorating health in the Taloja jail.

Human Rights Activist Varavara Rao moved to Mumbai's JJ Hospital
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Poet Varavara Rao was moved to Mumbai’s Sir JJ Hospital on Monday night after his family informed about his deteriorating health and the urgent need for medical care. The 80-year-old human rights activist has been in jail for nearly two years in the Elgar Parishad case and is lodged at Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai. 

This comes after several activists along with Rao’s family members held an urgent presser on Sunday to inform about his deteriorating health in the Taloja jail. They demanded authorities to provide him with urgent medical attention. According to his family, Rao was unable to walk properly and was hallucinating. 

A phone call from Rao on Saturday made the family worried about his health. The family demanded immediate medical help and Rao's release from jail. They informed he was not able to take care of himself and was talking about the funeral of his mother and father. 

On Monday, Rao’s lawyer challenged a June 26 order by the special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court to deny him temporary medical bail. Approaching Bombay HC, Rao’s lawyer filed a petition seeking medical intervention for him.

Nihal Singh Rathod, a Nagpur based lawyer, emailed the authorities at Taloja jail seeking Rao's latest medical reports and the description of his condition. 

On Sunday, renowned academicians - Romila Thapar, Prabhat Patnaik, Maja Daruwala, Satish Deshpande and Devaki Jain - wrote to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray saying that there was no reason in law or conscience to hold him in circumstances that increase the risk to his fragile health. 

Even Maharashtra Housing Minister Jitendra Awhad also expressed concerns over the health condition of the Telangana poet and appealed the central government to urgently shift him to a hospital. 

“We are extremely worried about Varvara Rao's health condition. His possession is under Home Ministry of Central Govt and not under Maharashtra Govt. We appeal to the Central Govt to urgently shift him to a hospital,” he tweeted. 

Rao was admitted to JJ Hospital on May 28 also after he complained of giddiness and was discharged on June 1. The family, however, said that he was shifted to the hospital earlier in an unconscious state while adding that there has been no improvement in his health since then. 

Varavara Rao along with 10 other lawyers and human rights activists have been booked under Unlawful Activity (Prevention) Act (UAPA) for allegedly instigating violence at the annual Bhima Koregaon event in 2018. 

11 lawyers and rights activists – Varavara Rao, Shoma Sen, Rona Wilson, Surendra Gadling, Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj, Sudhir Dhawale, Mahesh Raut, Gautam Navlakha and Anand Teltumbde – have been arrested over an alleged plot to assassinate Prime Minister Narendra Modi. 

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