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Mathura: PhD scholar Atiqur Rehman, facing terror charges and lodged in a Mathura jail, was on Wednesday sent to All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi for bypass surgery after the money for his surgery was sanctioned by the Uttar Pradesh government.
“Since the money needed for bypass surgery of Atiqur Rehman has been sanctioned by the government, he has been sent to AIIMS,” Mathura Jail Superintendent Brijesh Kumar told PTI.
Rahman was sent to AIIMS a day after the Allahabad high court, while hearing an urgent interim application by Rehman on November 23, expressed displeasure against the government for its failure in getting him admitted to AIIMS for heart surgery.
A high court bench of Justices Mahesh Chandra Tripathi and Subhash Vidyarthi expressed displeasure, noting that the government has failed in providing medical facilities to the petitioner despite two lower courts earlier underlining the need for urgent medical intervention for the treatment of the accused.
Despite repeated orders dated September 23 and October 12, 2021 passed by the sessions judge of the special court, PMLA Lucknow, the adequate medical facility has not been provided to the petitioner, the bench noted in its order, fixing November 25 for the next hearing of Rehman’s plea.
In his plea to the high court, Rehman had sought bail for surgical intervention due to his fatal aortic regurgitation condition in which the aortic valve does not close tightly, leading to the possibility of some of the blood pumped by the heart leaking backwards, the bench had noted.
“The applicant (Rehman) is a patient of severe aortic regurgitation, meaning the destruction of the aortic wall and is a known pre-condition of cardiac arrest. Hence the applicant be referred to AIIMS New Delhi,” the Lucknow PMLA court had said in its order on September 23.
Despite this, no arrangement for his bypass surgery was made for two months, Rehman counsel Anand said.
A fortnight after Lucknow court’s September 23 order, Rehman was sent to AIIMS, which demanded Rs 2 lakh for the surgery, following which Jail Superintendent Kumar sent the requisition to the state government.
“The government apparently sanctioned the money a day before the hearing of Rehman’s plea on Thursday by the high court and he was sent to AIIMS on Wednesday,” Anand said.
Rehman was arrested along with Kerala journalist Siddique Kappan besides a third man, Masood Ahmad, and their driver Alam when all four were on their way to Hathras to meet the family of a gang-rape and murder victim in October 2020.
Arrested initially on the charges of apprehension of the breach of peace in the society, they were later booked on stringent charges of terrorism under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and Information Technology Act for allegedly funding the unrest.