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Stan Swamy reluctant to move out of Taloja jail

12:15 AM Dec 05, 2020 | Staff Reporter

While 83-year-old tribal rights activist Stan Swamy's plea for straw, sipper and winter wear continues to be pending before the court as the report from jail did not arrive on Friday, Swamy's advocate has made a plea before the special court on Friday seeking to be heard if Swamy is to be shifted out of Taloja Central Jail where he is currently lodged.

Swamy’s advocate Sharif Shaikh said that the report of the jail doctors on whether the straw, sipper and winter wear are required for Swamy did not arrive and now the report has been called on 10 December.

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The fresh plea was made on 26 November after the previous plea for return of his straw and sipper seized by the NIA was rejected by the court as the NIA said it had not seized these articles.

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Shaikh informed the court that from news reports, he has gathered information that the straw and sipper have been provided, but that he has no official information on it. The court has called for the jail’s report again on 10 December.

Swamy, who was arrested by NIA last month from Ranchi, Jharkhand in connection with the Bhima-Koregaon case, had learnt from the Taloja jail superintendent, his advocate said, that he will be shifted to another jail in the city. The plea seeks to direct the jail superintendent not to shift him without the permission of the court. The court has in this regard called a report from the Taloja prison on December 10.

A source said that Swamy, who is a tribal rights activist and Jesuit pries, thas been informed he will be shifted to Arthur Road jail and is reluctant to shift there as two of his co-accused in the case Arun Ferreira and Vernon Gonsalves are helping him with him daily chores which he finds difficult to perform due Parkinson’s disease and other health ailments. They are also helping him prepare his defence.

A jail official told FPJ that only those prisoners who were newly admitted to Taloja prison post-October 29 are being shifted to prisons of their jurisdiction, which closed for new admissions during the pandemic. Swamy being lodged in Taloja prison from October 9 onwards is not eligible to be shifted and there is no question of him being shifted.

Shaikh also made a plea on behalf of another accused in the case - cultural activist Jyoti Jagtap for return on her rental house keys that the NIA had seized during her arrest. The court has called for the agency’s response on this plea.

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