MUMBAI: A special court on Friday cleared NCP leader and Minister of State Nawab Malik for treatment at a private hospital. “The Superintendent of Arthur Road Prison is responsible for admitting the accused Nawab Malik to Criticare Asia Hospital for undergoing treatment at his own expense,” Special Judge Rahul N Rokade said.
Meanwhile, the court did not allow former interior minister Anil Deshmukh’s request for treatment at a private hospital and instead said he should continue his treatment at the government-run JJ Hospital.
In Malik’s case, his lawyer said in court that despite his order last week, he was not admitted to JJ and was instead taken to different hospitals and made to travel. “He can be charged with a serious crime but he is entitled to humane treatment,” his lawyer said. He said some of the tests and treatments that Malik needed to undergo were not available at JJ Hospital.
The court took serious issue with the fact that despite his orders last week, Malik was not admitted to JJ for the purpose of a detailed examination and investigation into his health. “It’s very serious . . . how not to obey court orders,” the judge said.
Malik’s lawyer had argued that he suffered from chronic kidney disease with a bilateral kidney cyst, which could lead to kidney failure. It has been argued that in April he was advised to undergo the surgical excision of a left kidney cyst.
Malik was arrested in February in a money laundering case. In a plea submitted last month, Malik also said he was suffering from neck pain, lower back pain and rashes due to the inhumane conditions in Arthur Road prison.
The court, in its order, also said that Malik would be escorted by the police and that the expenses incurred would be borne by him. Malik’s daughter was allowed to remain present during her hospitalization.
The dean of BMC-run Sion Hospital, Dr Manoj Joshi, said Malik went to the hospital for dental treatment. He had requested a gastrointestinal consultation on Thursday, he added.
Deshmukh (74) was present in court on Friday. Standing on the witness stand with his arm in a sling, he said he was in severe pain in his shoulder. The court ordered the prison superintendent to send Deshmukh back to KEM for a thalium stress test. “After receiving the report. . . the accused be referred to JJ Hospital for treatment of the dislocated shoulder with a report of the thalium stress test. The defendant’s daughter is only allowed to remain present during hospitalization, as per protocol,” the special judge said.
The ER on Monday opposed Deshmukh’s plea for transfer to a private hospital, saying all adequate facilities are available at JJ and the doctor in charge performs 30 to 35 surgeries a year. But Deshmukh’s lawyer argued he had the right to choose the hospital.